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A Thesis 

Presented to the 

Faculty of 

San Diego State University 

In Partial Fulfillment 

of the Requirements for the Degree 

Master of Arts 

Asian Studies 

Ronald Kenneth Bell 
April 1974 




A Thesis 

Presented to the 

Faculty of 

San Diego State University 

Ronald Kenneth Bell 
April 1974 


As social awareness and political consciousness 
evolved in the nineteenth century Spanish Philippines a 
need for radical change became necessary. At first, 
the Filipinos requested reforms but, as their requests 
went unheeded, charismatic and visionary leaders arose 
from their ranks and united the masses in a more 
am.bitious crusade--independence . The previously docile 
population became fierce fighters successfully opposing 
their former colonial masters. In retrospect, this 
event was a classic example of the results of socio- 
political evolution, and a forecast of Southeast Asian 

The Philippine revolution consisted of two 
phases--the insurrection against the Spaniards, and the 
revolt against the Americans. Continuity between rhe 
phases was provided by an organization known as the 
Hong Kong Junta. The object of this thesis is to 
analyze the Junta , determine its purpose, and measure 
its impact. 

Chapter I will examine the period just preced- 
ing the revolution. To trace the roots of the Hong 
Kong Junta, it will be necessary to establish the 


motivating forces that impelled the actions and reac- 
tions of the members of the Junta. 

In Chapter II, the Junta itself will be 
described--its formation, resources, personalities, and 
objectives. On this stage and with these props, the 
cast of the Junta v^ill enact their part in history. 

The events that involved the Junta with the 
United States will be examined in Chapter III. The 
next chapter will describe the internal problems of the 
Junta ^ identify the factions and deal with the exter- 
nal relations of the Junta ^ specifically the 
representative to the United States. 

Chapter V will deal with the reorganization of 
the Junta ^ indentifying its new role, following the 
United States' ratification of the Paris Peace Treaty. 
Conclusions will be recorded in Chapter VI, bearing 
upon the interrelationship of the Junta with the 
Philippine Insurrection and with revolution in general. 

The special advice and guidance of Professor 
Rizalino A. Oades of San Diego State University are 
gratefully acknowledged. 
















The awakening of the Filipino people to 
national self-consciousness was a gradual process 
economically, politically, and socially. As trade and 
commerce increased, so did contact with foreigners. 
Manila, known as the "Pearl of the Orient," flourished 
as a center of trade which accelerated social sophisti- 
cation on the part of the natives, particularly the 
Tagalogs , inhabiting this area of central Luzon. 

Spain, which had colonized the Philippine 
Islands since the middle of the sixteenth century, 
perhaps unwittingly contributed to the emergence of the 
Filipino nationality. Spanish clergy introduced Chris- 
tianity, and The worship of one God provided a common 
bond for the natives. Though limited by the friars to 
religious exercises characterized by conservatism, 
formal education also began to expand the world of the 
Filipinos. In addition, common grievances, the influx 
of liberal ideas, and racial prejudice by the Spaniards 
contributed to a sense of national unity. 

During the nineteenth century, a new class of 
Filipinos began to assert itself. As certain natives 

improved their economic lot, became educated, and 
intermarried v/ith the Spanish administrators or the 
immigrant Chinese, they formed a middle class. Gen- 
erally composed of mestizos --people of Spanish, Chinese 
and Filipino ancestry, this class continued to prosper. 
Affluence permitted greater opportunities, particularly 
in education. The middle class was not confined to 
church schooling; wealth enabled study in secular 
institutions, and travel to Europe for advanced studies, 
Although the educated Filipinos, called Illustrados y 
theoretically came from varying economic strata, educa- 
tion required money; hence the members of this class 
were usually wealthy. 

Spaniards constituted a small minority of the 

population, and the Illustrados could claim equal or 

better professional and educational backgrounds. 

Nevertheless, the Illustrados were denied access to 

political and ecclesiastical positions of power or 

influence because of their origins. Laws and represen- 

tation in the Spanish Cortes favored the Spaniard. 

Frustrations generated by Spanish policies gradually 

alienated the Illustrados as a group, forcing them to 

develop their own power base. 

The Itlustrados became a vehicle for the desires 
of the people by transmitting grievances to the 
Spaniards. This development was not entirely due to 
altruism, but was also based upon the Itlustrados' 
desire to defend their own interests. Perm.eated with 
liberal ideas garnered from Europe and America, but 
socially and politically circumscribed because of their 
mixed ancestry, the iZlus trades desired a greater voice 
in the politics and administration of the Philippines. 
Although few in numbers and limited in support, they 
naturally gravitated towards the issues of the people. 
In response to iniquities suffered by the natives at the 

hands of the Spaniards (who sometimes referred to the 

people as eJ2on^os--colloquial Filipino for "monkeys"), 

reform became the platform of the Itlustrados . 

During the 1880s and 1890s students and intel- 
lectuals began to campaign both in Spain and the 
Philippines for freer government, replacement of the 
Spanish friars by Filipino priests, honest administra- 
tion, improvement of educational facilities, and removal 
of restrictions upon the press and public opinion. The 
aim was to awaken the "lethargic" and "docile" masses 
and to gather support for a program of reform among 
their own countrymen as well as Spanish liberals. This 

campaign quickly turned into a propaganda movement, 
although it remained nonviolent and legal in character. 

One of the first organs of propaganda was a 
fortnightly paper, La Solidaridad, founded by Graciano 
Lopez Jaena in 1889 and published in Madrid. The list 
of contributors to this paper could have constituted a 
roster of early Filipino revolutionary heroes; e.g., 
Jose Rizal, M, H. del Pilar, Eduardo de Lete, Antonio 
and Juan Luna, Jose Panganiban, Mariano Ponce, Isabelo 
de los Reyes, Dominador Gomez, Pedro Paterno. Others 
included liberal Spaniards in sympathy with the 
Filipino cause. 

The paper featured articles describing 
political, social, and economic conditions in the 
Philippines and news concerning other Spanish colonies. 
Often authors, to protect their relatives, would use 
pseudonyms, for the paper was banned and considered 
seditious by Spanish authorities in the Philippines. 
The paper was surreptitiously introduced into the 
island colony and read furtively. Copies were passed 
from hand to hand and eventually reached a considerable 
portion of the populace. 

The leaders of the propaganda movement desired 
not only to maintain, but also to tighten, the 

traditional connection between the Philippines and 
Spain. This is not to say that they were oblivious to 
trends. They fully appreciated the consequences if the 
Spanish continued to ignore their request for reform. 
Radicals anxious to take control of the movement and 

determined to steer it into a violent confrontation had 

. . 7 

joined the movement. 

Jose Rizal, a young Filipino medical student 
who epitomized the intellectual leadership of the 
propagandists, detected the drift away from reform and 
observed certain weaknesses. Seeing that La Solidari- 
dad was not succeeding in its campaign to convince the 
Spanish government of the need for changes, Rizal 
decided to produce a more forceful vehicle. The result 
was his novel Noli Me Tangere (Don't Touch Me), whose 
purpose v;as to expose the sufferings of the Filipino 
people and present Philippine life as it actually was. 
The success of this novel prompted a second. El Fili- 
busterismo , a continuation of the story of the first 

To the Spanish, Rizal was warning that unless 
the demands of the people were heard, the only recourse 
would be violence. To the Filipinos, he was cautioning 

against personal hatred and ambition, and was espousing 

love of country. 

To foster partiotism, Rizal formed a society 

called the Liga Filipina in July, 1892. The society 

floundered shortly after its formation due to Rizal 's 

deportation by the Spaniards to Dapitan, a remote area 

on the island of Mindanao. His Liga was temporarily 

revived under Andres Bonifacio, a self-educated 

reformer with radical inclinations. Apolinario Mabini, 

a brilliant but physically crippled intellectual, was 

appointed secretary of the supreme council. In his 

words, the objectives of the society were 

to contribute to the support of La Solidaridad and 
the reforms it asked; to raise funds to meet the 
expenses noi: only of the periodical but also of the 
public meetings organized to support such reforms 
. . . in brief, to have recourse to all peaceful 
and legal means .... 

Due to lack of support, disagreements among its 

members, and a conviction on the part of its leaders 

that conciliation and compromise were bringing no 

results, the society was disbanded. One group was 

retained, however, calling itself the Cuerpo de 

Compromisarios (body of compromisers), specifically 

intended to support, through a monthly contribution of 

five pesos, the publication of La Solidaridad. 

other forces were also at v.'ork influencing 
Filipino self-consciousness. Masonry, introduced by 
native reformists returning from Spain, spread through- 
out Manila and the surrounding provinces. To the alarm 
of the authorities, who believed that the Masons were 
fostering hatred against Spain, Masonic lodges gained 
in popularity. The platform of the Filipino Masons 
actually rested on their desire to become Spanish 
citizens. Far from hating the Spaniards, they desired 
the Philippines to become a Spanish province. 

In spite of their initial promise, the native 
societies and the propaganda campaign were failing to 
accomplish their objectives. This was due to petty 
jealousies the reformers, difficulty in collecting 
funds, and lack of coordination. The negative results 
discouraged the reformists and thinned their ranks. 
New leaders, however, were beginning to assert them- 
selves in the Philippines--aggressive and fiercely 
nationalistic men who were determined to change the 
character of the movement. Believing it was futile to 
continue a peaceful approach to reform, they began to 
lay revolutionary plans. 

In July, 1892, Andres Bonifacio, a spokesman 
for the radical elements, formed a new society--the 

K. K. K. or Katipunauy promoting violence rather than 

12 . . . 
conciliation. This organization had two aims: (1) 

to unite the Filipinos into one nation, (2) to win 
Philippine independence by means of revolution. Under 
Bonifacio and Emilio Jacinto, a man with a genius for 
organization, the Katipunan grew in mem.bership. Uti- 
lizing the secret, ritualistic methods of the Masons, 
the Katipunan required certain initiation rites final- 
ized by the pacta de sangre (blood pact). Code names, 
passwords, and secret sym.bols were used. Including 
both men and women, the society played upon the 
superstitions of The masses, impressing them with 
ritualistic mysteries and secrecy, and the need for 
obedience. It also served to counteract the hold of 
the friars, who often used the confessional to extract 
secrers from the people. 

From its inception, the Katipunan was phenom- 
enally successful and spread quickly throughout the 
provinces of Luzon. The society had its own newspaper, 
the Kalayaan, which disseminated its revolutionary 
ideals. In addition, other literature designed to 
incite the people was produced by the leaders of the 
Katipunan, and rules of conduct were taught to the 

membership. By the middle of 1896, the society had 

recruited an estimated 100,000 members. 

There were some, however, who rejected the aims 
of the Katipunan. The most prominent opponent was Jose 
Rizal, who condemned armed revolt. He believed the 
people were unprepared, armed revolt premature. Rizal 
felt that evolution, not revolution, was needed. 

Eventual discovery was inevitable. The friars 
discovered the secrets of the Katipunan , and reported 
to the Spanish administration. This action had 
several effects. It drove the organization into deeper 
secrecy. In addition, it further incensed the people 
against Spanish injustices and restrictions. The Span- 
ish reaction of indiscriminate persecution drove the men 
who preferred peaceful reform into the camp of the men 
who preferred armed revolt. Perhaps most important, it 
forced the hand of the rebels. Despite a severe 
shortage of arms and supplies, Bonifacio insisted upon 
armed resistance, and led his followers into the safety 
of the hills. The discovery had forced the Katipunan 
into a premature confrontation with the Spaniards. 

At this point a transition from the liberal 
Filipino viewpoint held by men like Rizal to the radical 
views of Bonifacio was taking place. The time was ripe 


for the radical and aggressive ideas of the Katipunan 
to attract some of the upper class Filipinos who had 
been liberal, and part of the intelligentsia who were 
impatient for accomplishments. The risks were the 
same, for the Spaniards made no distinction between 
liberal and radical Filipino elements. 

The situation was by no means clear-cut. 
Filipinos, in particular the intelligentsia, still had 
strong cultural ties to Spain despite a growing sense 
of patriotism based upon a Filipino rather than a 
Spanish self-consciousness. Down the socioeconomic 
ladder, the ties to Spain became weaker. The peasants 
were much less concerned with the culture of Spain than 
were the affluent mestizos . Peasant patriotism was 
just beginning, based upon the more radical influences. 

The Katipunan' s success is partially attrib- 
utable to its appeal to the masses, for the organization 
served as a social as well as a political outlet. In 
some respects it replaced the church; as a popular 
secret society it was timely in its appearance in oppo- 
sition to the Spanish administration and particularly 

1 R 
the clergy. The way had been paved by the propagan- 
dists, whose V7ritings had begun to seep down to the 
lower classes. Efforts by the Spaniards to curtail the 


propagandists had also affected the lower classes and 
further aggravated their grievances. The Katipunan 
became an outlet for their frustrations and provided a 
positive direction against Spanish oppression. 

On August 25, 1896, the first clash between the 

Katipuneros and the Spaniards took place in Bulakan 

province on Luzon. The area around Manila was the 

epicenter of the revolt. The peaceful demands of the 

early propagandists were now replaced by a call for 

independence. In a cave in the hills of Balintawak, 

Bonifacio and a band of Katipuneros coined the rallying 

cry, "Long live Philippine Independence!" As they 

turned from sloganeering to action, the Spaniards 

responded with a reign of terror. Arrests were 

indiscriminate and mere suspicion was the basis for 

torture. On August 30, Ramon Blanco, the Spanish 

Governor of the Philippines-, proclaimed a state of war 

1 8 

in the provinces surrounding Manila. 

Thus began the first phase of the Philippine 
revolution, the insurrection against Spain. Indepen- 
dence, which would be a primary goal of the Kong Kong 
Junta and the driving force behind the revolution in 
its later stages, was now the ambition of only a few 


naive Tagalogs , forced into premature, violent action 


by the uncovering of their secret society. 

According to historian John Foreman, the rebel 

aims at that time were reflected in the cry "Long Live 

Spain: Death to the Friars!" Many of the sophis- 
ticates, educated men of position who in any national 
movement would have been the leaders, considered 
independence an ephemeral ambition. The Katipunan and 

the revolution of 1896 were not the products of the 

upper class. There was doubt whether the Filipinos, 

lacking arms, could defeat the Spaniards. Moreover, as 

the possibility remained that Spain would grant 

reforms, the upper class was still reluctant to 

jeopardize its prominent position in the Spanish- 

controlled Filipino society. Certainly there was a 

natural sympathy for the cause of one's countrymen, but 

this was not sufficient reason to risk everything. 

Many well-to-do Filipinos hastened to assure the 

Spanish authorities of their loyalty. They were met 

2 3 
with suspicion and rebuff. 

Certain men of high principle and moral 

integrity such as Mabini and Rizal did not take part 

in the uprising of 1896. Approached by Katipunan 

agents, Rizal firmly refused to approve or support 


a revolution. Even after he was arrested by the 
Spaniards, Rizal continued to maintain this position, 
protesting his innocence and counseling against 
violence . 

Several important factors weakened the cause of 
the revolutionists. First, they lacked a solid corps 
of leaders and policy m.akers . Intellectuals were 
missing, as were men capable of sustaining a revolution- 
ary movement beyond the initial stages of violence. 
Bonifacio's following of Kativunevos was small. 
Bonifacio was a dedicated patriot, but he lacked the 
spark necessary to attract people, to unite the various 
tribes, and to enlist the aid and cooperation of the 
intelligentsia. Second, the revolutionists lacked arms 
and money. Against the well-equipped Spaniards, bolo 
knives were poor weapons. Without funds, there was 
little chance of obtaining the arms necessary for 
prolonged resistance. Third, true unity still did not 
exist among the people. Many had only a vague idea of 
the revolutionary purpose of the leaders . Others had 
visions of self aggrandizement or were motivated by 
racial hatred. 

Independence was a state that was glorious and 
desirable, but the qualifications necessary to attain 


and sustain it were still not fully appreciated by the 
common man. He could only express his need for reform. 
The situation was not static, however, for forces and 
events would dictate change. 

The propagandists possessed a dual loyalty. 
They were Filipino nationalists in the sense that they 
loved their country, the Philippine Islands, and their 
people. They did not consider themselves a separate 
race, as the Spanish did, but a part of the Filipino 
nationality. They desired improvement, recognition, 
and relative equality for the people. The duality in 
loyalty existed in the propagandists' strong cultural, 
intellectual, and political ties to Spain. Their desire 
to become a province of the homeland reflected a wish 
to raise the status of the Filipino people to that of 
the Spanish. The level of the Illustrados would auto- 
matically be raised thereby, enabling them as the elite 
among the Filipinos to join the elite among the 
Spaniards . 

There was also a strong sense of idealism in 
the propagandists' goal--idealistic in the sense that 

they believed it was possible to evolve a common polity 

out of different races and cultures. In view of the 

fact that the Spaniards considered themselves to be the 


superior culture and vjere in fact the ruling elite in 
the Philippines, it V7as too much to suppose that the 
Spaniards would accept the proposed equality. 

The propagandists possessed the training and 
intellect to provide the revolution with direction. 
Their movement, which expressed the people's need for 
reform, was a stimulus to both Spaniards and Filipinos. 
Serving to awaken the resentment of the people against 
the Spaniards, the propagandists incited men such as 
Bonifacio and Jacinto to action, first by verbalizing 
their complaints, then--through frustration due to a 
lack of results--provoking them to adopt more violent 
means . 

The Spaniards reacted to the propagandists with 
a regime of cruelty and suppression. This only served 
to strengthen the resolve of the radicals to adopt 
violence in lieu of compromise. The radical members 
forming the Katipunan provided impetus to the revolu- 
tionary movement. Whereas the propagandists lacked the 
desire to risk their station and privileges, and 
whereas cultural ties were too strongly oriented 
tov/ards Spain, there existed no such restrictions on 
the membership of the Katipunan. The lower and middle 
class members of Filipino native society were more 


emotional than intellectual in their motivation. They 
had little to lose in status or riglits. They had borne 
the brunt of the political, ecclesiastical, and social 
subjugation imposed by the Spaniards. 

If the two factions--the intellectual propagan- 
dists and the violent revolutionaries--could unite, the 
revolutionary force would have the capacity to become a 
viable movement. It was to be the action of the 
Spaniards that would marry the two groups. 

Governor General Blanco, at first sympathetic 
towards the legitimate Filipino demands for reform, 

eventually succumbed to the pressures of the Spanish 

secret police and clergy. Spanish propaganda, 

initiated by the friars and administrators in Manila, 

worked against the liberal Filipinos' or Spaniards' 

efforts to curtail the local insurrection. The 

prisons of Manila were soon stuffed to the point of 

suffocation with prisoners. Hundreds of persons were 

deported without trial, sentence, warning, or apparent 

justification. Others were tried and executed on the 

flimsiest of testimony. 

The arrival in the Philippines of General 

Polavieja, who had put down the 1890 uprising in Cuba, 

signaled an increase of Spanish suppression. Sent to 


take command of the newly arriving Spanish troops, 
Polavieja was identified vjith the clergy. The harsh, 

inflexible military policy he instituted resembled his 

2 8 
tactics in Cuba. 

Insensitive to the feelings of the natives, the 

Spaniards crowned their blunders with the execution of 

Jose Rizal, the one man who commanded the respect of 

both the liberal and radical Filipino factions. Under 

Polavieja, a military court tried Rizal for rebellion, 

sedition, and illicit association. The secret and 

siimmary method of trial was repugnant to the Filipinos, 

many of whom knew Rizal was opposed to armed revolt. 

Moreover, to them Rizal embodied the best of Filipino 

attributes . 

Rizal represented all the poetry and imagination 
in the dawning national aspirations of a poetical 
people .... He was, besides, chief spokesman 
of the srerner judgment of the saner element among 
the people; . . . his name was a fetish among them 
[the masses] . 29 

On December 30, 1896, Rizal was executed. The 
shots reverberated throughout the archipelago, destroy- 
ing the remnants of respect for the Spaniards. By this 
act, Spain had made a major contribution to unifying the 

people against her. "The execution of Rizal," as John 

30 - • 
Foreman put it, "v;as a most impolitic act." Emilio 


Aguinaldo, a young man from rural Cavite Viejo, filled 
the gap. Joining the insurgents at the beginning of 
the revolt, he fought his way into prominence by 
winning battles. His successes, sorely needed, provided 
important psychological and military impetus to the 

Aguinaldo was born on March 22, 18 69. The 
municipal rolls of the Spanish listed the Aguinaldo 

family as mestizo sangleyes , or natives mixed with 

Chinese blood. Aguinaldo grew up as a scion of a 

prominent local family, and attended the College of San 

Juan de Letran in Manila. In his third year, he left 

school and returned home. At a young age Aguinaldo 

began to gain a reputation as a leader. First elected 

Cabeza de Barangay (village head man) , at the age of 

twenty-five the town officials elected him Capitan 

Municipal (town mayor). Influenced by the writings of 

Rizal, like most young men of his generation and class, 

Aguinaldo became imbued with the spirit of nationalism. 

Shortly after being elected Cabeza, Aguinaldo joined 

the Masonry but, as the organization was not daring 

enough, he joined the Katipunan . Given the code name 

of "Magdalo ," he became active in the organization and 


quickly rose m rank. In time this name was applied 

to Aguinaldo's faction as opposed to Bonifacio's. 

Utilizing his position of Capitan Municipal as 

a cover, Aguinaldo secretly opposed the Spanish. Upon 

learning that his disguise had been broken, Aguinaldo 

came into the open, and led the Cavite revolt on 

August 31, 1896, defeating a detachment of the Spanish 

guard. With a small force Aguinaldo overcame the 

Spaniards in other towns and gained a reputation as a 

• - 33 

capable military leader. 

Other individuals were also distinguishing 

themselves, but it was Aguinaldo who possessed the 

charisma to attract hundreds of nationalists to his 

camp. A secret of his rising influence was the popular 

belief that he possessed the anting -anting (talisman), 

making him invulnerable. His continuing successes 

strengthened this faith. 

Bonifacio, the able organizer of the Katipunan^ 

lacked military skills. While he experienced a series 

of defeats and a loss in popularity, the victorious 

Aguinaldo was fast becoming the idol of the masses. A 

split developed in the ranks of the Katipuneros , with 

Aguinaldo supported by the Mag dalo fdiCtxon headquartered 


at San Francisco de Malabon, and Bonifacio supported by 

the Magdiwang faction located at Imus. 

Believing in a rule-or-ruin philosophy, 
Bonifacio advocated extermination of the Europeans. To 
the contrary, Aguinaldo insisted that he was fighting 
for a cause for which he sought sympathy and moral 
support from "friends of liberty" all over the world. 
At Cavite, he issued a manifesto declaring the aim of 
the revolution to be "Liberty and Independence," and 
proposing a new government similar to that of the United 
States. Bonifacio denied the need for a new govern- 
ment and claimed that the Katipunan could function as a 
revolutionary government directing military activities. 

To resolve these differences, most of the 
leaders of the revolution gathered at Tejeros, in San 
Francisco de Malabon, on March 22, 18 97. Bonifacio was 
present, but Aguinaldo was not. Following heated 
arguments, a vote was taken. The outcome repudiated 
Bonifacio's leadership; the assembly voted to replace 
the Katipunan with a new revolutionary government, under 
Emilio Aguinaldo as president. 

Bonifacio, defiant but powerless to oppose the 
majority, left Tejeros with a few loyal followers, 
intent on establishing his own government. Shortly 


afterward, Bonifacio's band was attacked by Aguinaldo's 
followers and Bonifacio was taken prisoner. At a 
summary court-martial, Bonifacio was found guilty of 
sedition, and was executed. 

The circumstances of the death of Bonifacio are 
clouded. Aguinaldo has claimed that it was an unfor- 
tunate mistake, but others say that in order to 
preserve the integrity of the revolutionary forces, 
Bonifacio's death was a regrettable but necessary 
political move. Mabini asserts that Bonifacio's death 

was a crime attributable to Aguinaldo's personal 

ambition true patriotism. 

During the period following Bonifacio's death, 
the revolutionary forces suffered repeated reverses. 
To some extent the enthusiasm for the revolutionary 
cause had been squelched by the death of Bonifacio, but 
the revolution was by no means suppressed. Aguinaldo 
was forced to retreat in July, 18 97, to the mountains 
in Bulakan province. Here he established his head- 
quarters and continued his resistance to Spain. 

On November 1, 18 97, after the revolutionary 

leaders had agreed to continue the v;ar at all costs, 

3 8 
the Biak-na-Bato Republic was proclaimed. Felix 

Ferrer and Isabelo Artacho, newly appointed 


revolutionary leaders, were designated to prepare a 
provisional constitution. They copied the Cuban 

Revolutionary Constitution of Jimaguayu, 1895, and 

passed xt off as their own work. This became known 

as the Biak-na-Bato Constitution and was signed by the 
majority of the rebels. The aims of the new republic 
were the separation of the Philippines from the Spanish 
monarchy and the formation of an independent state. 

General Fernando Primo de Rivera, the successor 
to General Polavieja who had returned to Spain in poor 
health, realized the prohibitive cost in money and 
lives of crushing a rebellion, so far from the home- 
land, by military means. Being a man of tact and 
acumen, he realized the advantages of a peaceful 
settlement over a lengthy and costly guerrilla 
campaign. After several fruitless attempts by de 
Rivera to negotiate with Aguinaldo through prominent 
Spaniards, Pedro A. Paterno, an established lawyer from 
Manila, volunteered to act as arbitrator. In late 
1897, Paterno succeeded in negotiating an agreement 
called the Pact of Biak-na-Bato, consisting of three 
documents signed by the Governor General for Spain, 
de Rivera, and by himself for the insurgents. 


The first document, signed on November 18, 
stipulated the payment of P800,000 for surrendered 

arms, and the exile of Aguinaldo and his companions to 

40 . . . 

Hong Kong. The remittance was to be accomplished m 

three installments: P400,000 in the form of a bank 

draft payable in Hong Kong on Aguinaldo 's departure 

from the Philippines, P200,000 when the number of arms 

surrendered exceeded 700, and P200,000 after the Te 

Deum was sung in the Manila Cathedral and general 

amnesty had been proclaimed. 

The second document, signed on December 14, 
granted "an ample and general amnesty" to the rebels 
and reiterated the financial arrangements of the 
indemnity mentioned in the first document. The last 
paragraph of the second agreement alluded to the hope 
and expectation of the Filipino people that the 
Spaniards would institute the desired reforms, but 
nothing concrete was stipulated. 

The third document, signed on December 15, 1897, 
called for the payment of an additional indemnity. 
Besides the P800,000 already mentioned, P900,000 was to 
be distributed among the civilians victimized by the 
war. The total indemnity agreed upon in the three 


documents thus amounted to PI, 700, 000, a relatively low 

price for the Spaniards to pay to end a costly 


On December 19, at a rebel conference held in 

Biak-na-Bato , an agreement was reached to invest the 

money in a business venture, the profits to be spent 

educating Filipino youths. Isabelo Artacho was 

appointed director of commerce, responsible for the 

disbursement of funds. Artacho, the rebel general 

Artemio Ricarte , and Baldomero Aguinaldo, a cousin of 

Emilio, were left behind to represent the supreme 

council in the implementation of the terms called for 

by the pact. 



Bonifacio S. Salamanca, The Filipino Reaction 
to American Rule: 1901-1913 (Hamden, Conn.: The Shoe 
String Press, 1968), p. 13; and Emma Helen Blair and 
James Alexander Robertson, comps.. The Philippine 
Islands: 1493-1898, 55 vols. (Cleveland, Ohio: Arthur 
H. Clark Co., 1909), 52:122-123, 183. 


Manila Times, 12 July 1899, lists the inhabi- 
tants of the Philippines as: 9 million natives, 
16 thousand Europeans, and 150 thousand Asiatics. 

Cortes is the national legislature of Spain. 

U ... 

Salamanca, F^l^pino Reaction to American Rule, 

p. 15. 

James Alfred LeRoy, The Americans in the 
Philippines , 2 vols. (New York: AMS Press, 1970), 

Guadalupe Fores-Ganzon , trans.. La Solidaridadj 
vol. 1, 1889 (Quezon City: University of the Philip- 
pines Press, 1957), p. viii. 

7 . 

Horatxo de la Costa, Readings in Philippine 

History (Manila: MDB Printing, 1965), p. 229. 


Apolinario Mabini, The Philippine Revolution 
(Republic of the Philippines, Department of Education: 
National Historical Commission, 1969), pp. 33, 35. 

Ibid. , p. 37 . 

■^°Ibid. , p. UO. 

Gregorio F. Zaide, Philippine Political and 
Cultural History, 2 vols. (Manila: Philippine Education 
Co. , 1956), 2:149. 


This was the Kataastaan Kagalanggalangang 

Katipunan Ng Mga Anak Ng Bayan (Highest and Most 
Respected Association of the Sons of the Country), more 
conveniently known by its initials K. K. K. or as the 



LeRoy , Americans in the Philippines , 1:88. 


Ibid. , p. 85 . 

•^^Ibid. , p. 88. 

"""^Ibid. , pp. 81, 83. 

17 ... 

At the outbreak of hostilities, Spanish 

troops numbered 1,500, augmented by 14,000 native 
soldiers of questionable loyalty. Only about 300 
Spanish troops were in the Manila area. Within six 
months, Spain sent 26,000 additional men. Many of the 
native troops remained loyal, their allegiance corre- 
sponding to the stand taken by their village or 
province. Ibid., pp. 94, 95; and John Foreman, The 
Philippine Islands (New York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 
1906), p. 378. 


Teodoro Manguiat Kalaw, The Philippine 

Revolution (Manila: J. B. Vargas Filipiniana Founda- 
tion, 1969), p. 19. 


Blair and Robertson, The Philippine Islands: 

1493-1898, 52:205. 


Foreman, The Philippine Islands .^ p. 379. 


Salamanca, Filipino Reaction to American 

Rule , p . 17 . 




LeRoy, Americans in the Philippines , 1:93. 

24 . . 

Usha Mahajani, Philippine Nationalzsm : 

External Challenge and Filipino Response , 156 5-1946 
(St. Lucia, Queensland: University of Queensland Press, 
1971), p. 62. 


Governor General Blanco was not a liberal, 

but sympathized with many of the demands of the 

Filipino people. Governor Blanco, however, did not 

have sufficient political influence, nor did he have 

the strength of character to firmly and continuously 

oppose the friars and administrators who, in order to 

discredit Blanco, accused him of supporting the 


Filipinos. For an excellent analysis of this man's 
role, see LeRoy, Americans in the Philippines -^ 

Addressed to Spanish reinforcements, the 
rabid speech of Rafael Comege, president of the 
Spanish Casino, is an example of nihilistic policies 
exhorted in the Spanish propaganda and speeches. 
Comege said, "Destroy! Kill! . , . Wild beasts should 
be exterminated; weeds should be exterminated!" 
Foreman, The Philippine Islands ■> p. 54 9. 


LeRoy, Americans in the Philippines , 1:106; 

and Foreman, The Philippine Islands^ p. 3 54. 

28, The Philippine Islands ^ p. 364. 

Polavieja arrived with 1,200 Spanish troops. Ibid., 
p. 378. 


LeRoy, Americons in the Philippines ^ 1:114. 


Foreman, The Philippine Islands , p. 389. 


Carlos Quirino, The Young Aguinaldo (Manila: 

Regal Printing Co., 1969), p. 15. 


Zaide, Philippine Political and Cultural 

History ■> 2:65; and Quirino, Young Aguinaldo, pp. 26, 


Foreman, The Philippine Islands ■> p. 371. 


Ibid., p. 372. The anting-anting supposedly 

gave protection from bodily harm. Numerous stories of 

Aguinaldo 's miraculous escapes began to circulate, 

feeding his fast-growing reputation. 

3 5 

Zaide, Philippine Political and Cultural 

History^ 2:168. 

q c 

Leandro H. Fernandez, The Philippine 
Republic (New York: Columbia University, 1926), p. 28. 

Mabini, Philippine Revolution , p. 48; cf. 
Zaide, Philippine Political and Cultural History , 
2:170, 171; LeRoy, Americans in the Philippines , 
1:120; and T. A. Agoncillo, "Aguinaldo and the Death 
of Bonifacio and Luna," in Aguinaldo in Retrospect ., 


ed . Garcia Mauro (Manila: Philippine Historical Asso- 
ciation, 1969), pp. 37-45. 

3 8 

Biak-na-Bato , an impregnable mountain area 

of northern Bulakan province, where the insurgent 

forces made their headquarters. LeRoy, Americans in 

the Philippines , 1:125-26. 


Jaime C. Veyra, "The Constitution of Biak- 
na-Bato," Journal of the Philippine Historical Society 
(Manila) 1 (July 1941): 3-11. 


Some sources have stated that the payments 

were in U. S. dollars, others that they were in Mexican 

dollars, and still others in pesos. Since pesos were 

the main unit of value at this time, all sums have been 

stated as pesos. Zaide, Philippine Political and 

Cultural History , 2:125. 


Primo de Rivera's estimated annual loss 

through death and sickness was 40 percent or 10,000 

men. LeRoy, Americans in the Philippines ^ 1:13 0. 


T. A. Agoncillo, Malolos: The Crisis of the 

Republic (Quezon City, Philippines: University of the 
Philippines, 1960), pp. 44, 45. 



Once the Pact of Biak-na-Bato was concluded, 
the Filipino insurgents prepared to fulfill their part 
of the bargain. Accompanied by a lieutenant, Aguinaldo 
traveled to the village of Saul on the Lingayen Gulf. 
The journey was not characterized by sadness and 
defeatism, as might have been expected, but by an 
attitude of relief and thankfulness on the part of the 
Filipinos as well as the Spaniards. The people lining 
the road to Saul greeted Aguinaldo as a hero, while the 
Spanish officials treated him as a general . 

At Saul, Aguinaldo and nineteen of his ranking 

officers boarded the British steamer Uranus on 

December 27, 18 97, bound for Hong Kong. Prior to the 

ship's departure, Aguinaldo dispatched a message to the 

Spanish Governor-General of the Philippines, Primo de 

Rivera. The phraseology does not convey any notion of 

continued resistance, but reveals the exiles' 

optimistic acceptance of the status quo. 

Those who were the Filipino rebels [said the 
message], on leaving the land of their birth, send 
their farewell greetings not without profound 


emotion and with tears in their eyes, leaving in the 
hands of Your Excellency the guardianship of their 
homes and the protection of the soil where first 
they saw the light of day. 

All are confident that Spain, impelled by right 
and justice, will grant reforms without bloodshed 
or combat, since so much blood has already stained 
the soil of Luzon--blood of heroes and martyrs now 
brothers in peace . Those who today offer them- 
selves loyally to Spain recommend as the paternal 
policy of Your Excellency a real agreement between 
rights and liberty. 

May God bless and keep this peace for the 
honorable future of our beloved country, the 
Philippines, and for the prosperity and grandeur of 
the Spanish fatherland. 2 

Because there was no necessity for any message, 

one must conclude that Aguinaldo was initially prepared 

either to respect the tenets of the Biak-na-Bato Pact, 

or that this was an elaborate scheme to deceive the 

Spaniards. His optimistic attitude was based upon the 

Spaniards ' verbal promise of reforms referred to in 

Aguinaldo 's departing message. Although such promises 

were not legally binding upon the Spaniards, Aguinaldo 

relied upon a native belief in Spanish pundonor , or 

punctiliousness on questions of honor, to carry out the 

verbal as well as the written terms of the pact. 

The mention of reforms in the message suggests 

that they were at least discussed and perhaps promised. 

Such hopes had weighed heavily in the Filipino decision 

to negotiate with the Spaniards at Biak-na-Bato. The 


naivete of the Filipinos in not demanding that these 
promised reforms be put in writing is evident but under- 
standable. There still existed strong cultural ties to 
Spain, which fostered tenacious confidence in the moral 
accountability of what Aguinaldo himself called the 
"Spanish fatherland." 

The band of exiles landed in Hong Kong on 
December 31, 1897, and were met by Filipino residents 
who had fled the islands after 1872 and who were now 
established m the Britxsh Crown Colony. Some of the 
old exiles had prospered through hard work and business 
deals. Although nationalistic, however, they did not 
possess the revolutionary background of the new 
arrivals and were suspicious of the young idealists, to 
whom they referred as "beggarly rebels." While they in 
turn were suspected by Aguinaldo 's men, Aguinaldo him- 
self realized the need for their support. They were 
rich and possessed valuable foreign contacts; their 
general adhesion to the revolutionary cause, repre- 
sented by Aguinaldo, could win for the cause the 
confidence and support of the wealthy in the 
Philippines. Accordingly, they were not to be alien- 
ated; an effort was made to cultivate them, without 


encouraging too active a participation or voice in 
revolutionary planning. With the progress of events a 
greater cleavage vjould occur between the two groups. 

On his arrival in Hong Kong, Aguinaldo's 
primary concern was the preservation of the money he 
had received in accordance with the agreement. On 
January 2, the first banking day of the year, Aguinaldo 
deposited the PUOOjOOO in the Hong Kong and Shanghai 
Banking Corporation under the name of Aguinaldo and 
Company, on a time deposit yielding 4 percent inter^est. 
Two days later, he withdrew half of the money and 
deposited it with the Chartered Bank of India, 
Australia and China at 2 percent interest with the 
provision that he could withdraw P50,000 per quarter. 
During the course of his transactions, Aguinaldo dis- 
covered that the second and third payments, each of 
P200,000, could be negotiated very profitably in the 
Crown Colony at an interest rate of 8 1/2 percent; 
therefore he urged his cousin Baldemero Aguinaldo, who 
was left behind in Biak-na-Bato , to remit the drafts 


without delay. The money in the bank was increased by 
P18,5 8 2.S0 between January 6 and February 16, and 

probably represented the proceeds from the treasury of 

the insurrection. 


Two significant points are involved in these 
transactions, apart from the dates of deposit. First, 
the money was deposited to the credit of Aguinaldo and 
Company; second, in arranging the bank transaction, 
Aguinaldo described the Philippines as an interior 
sovereignty (soberania interior) , established Novem- 
ber 1, 1897. The initial full deposit would have 
allayed any fears on the part of Aguinaldo 's companions 
as to his intended disposition of the money; the sub- 
sequent withdrawal gave Aguinaldo considerable financial 
flexibility. While the first point limited access to 
the money to Aguinaldo, the second demonstrates that 
Aguinaldo did not consider that the revolutionary 
government had ceased to exist. An "interior sover- 
eignty" meant that its agents were concealed--the men 
who administered its powers did so secretly. This was 

an indication of the low value placed on the agreement 


of Biak-na-Bato , and supports the allegation that a 

scheme was formulated in the mountain retreat to 
acquire arms at the expense of the Spaniards while 
gaining respite from the rigors of battle. 

There seems to be a contradiction to Aguinaldo 's 
attitude as expressed by his departing telegram. At 
the time the Pact of Biak-na-Bato was concluded, the 


Spaniards held the upper hand. Aguinaldo had no choice 
but to depart the Philippines. Perhaps overcome with a 
mixture of pride and respect for the Spanish culture, 
he optimistically and fatalistically phrased his 
farewell. There is no doubt that personally Aguinaldo 
held to his dream of independence, but due to the 
imposition of circumstances, he perhaps relegated his 
goal of independence to a secondary or futuristic 

A strict budget was established for the exiles 
and a frugal existence was -enforced by Aguinaldo. 
Every expense had to be reported to Aguinaldo, who 
meticulously noted the sums in his account book. The 
most trivial items--a pair of shoes, a new coat--had to 
be approved by the leader. For some of the men, this 
was a far cry from what they expected as exiles in Hong 
Kong. They were in a strange land where a foreign 
tongue was spoken; they had little to do except wait 
and hope for a chance to return to their homeland. 
Internal quarreling--a sign of their discontent--soon 

Aguinaldo had misread the intent and character 
of the men he had left behind. Their trust in him and 
the revolutionary cause was not as lasting as he had 


thought. The dissatisfaction manifested itself on 
December 29, 18 97, two days after Aguinaldo's depar- 
ture. Led by Isabelo Artacho, the rebels at Biak-na- 
Bato passed a resolution which defied the departed 
leaders. This attitude was the result of being left 
behind with no money, while the "less meritorious" were 
enjoying the use of the indemnity in Hong Kong. The 
authors of the resolution felt it impossible to carry 
on without alleviating their own financial plight. The 
resolution proposed that the second and third install- 
ments, totaling P400,000, be distributed to the most 
needy insurgents. 

Paciano Rizal, a respected insurgent leader, 
was selected to approach the Spaniards with this new 
proposal. Since the surrendering of rebels and arms 

was controlled by these men, de Rivera readily acceded 

to their petition. The second installment was 

quickly, if not equitably, divided among the leaders 
left at Biak-na-Bato . 

Pedro Paterno informed Aguinaldo of the resolu- 
tion of December 29 and of the subsequent Spanish 
payment to the rebels at Biak-na-Bato. For Aguinaldo, 
the situation was fast deteriorating. There was dis- 
content and division among the exiles in Hong Kong, 


and open defiance of his leadership in the Philippines. 

Unless countermeasures were taken, the discontent in 

Hong Kong could also turn to defiance. 

With clever timing and brilliant utilization of 

information received froni the Philippines, Aguinaldo 

repulsed the potential threat to his leadership and to 

the unity of the Junta. On February 14, 1898, 

Aguinaldo called a meeting of all the exiles in Hong 

Kong. They met at the Greenmount house--a sort of 

headquarters that was used as a gathering place for 

discussions and casual talk. He relayed to the 

assemblage Paterno's message describing the resolution 

of December 29. Aguinaldo then read a letter from 

Lieutenant Colonel Miguel Primo de Rivera, the nephew 

of the governor general, stating that the Spanish had 

no intention of making the third payment "as long as 

there was any revolt in the Philippines and the society 

of the Katipunan was not dissolved . . . ." The letter 

also dashed hopes of the return to the Philippines by 

any of the exiles. Aguinaldo then announced that 

Artacho was resigning as secretary of the interior and 

director of commerce and was demanding reimbursement of 

P508.75 for miscellaneous expenses. 


The Hong Kong exiles reacted just as Aguinaldo 
would have wished. They believed that the Spaniards and 
Artacho's group were acting in bad faith. The assem- 
blage agreed to repudiate the Biak-na-Bato agreement of 
December 19, 1897, and authorized Aguinaldo to take 
charge of the money, spending only the interest for 
living expenses. While they approved Artacho's resigna- 
tion, they disapproved his demands for reimbursement. 
As a final act, the officials of the provisional 
government formed at Biak-na-Bato were replaced by 

individuals selected from the membership of the exiled 

group . 

This meeting represented the first action of the 
Hong Kong Junta. The reins of the provisional govern- 
ment were officially, if not actually, assumed by the 
rebels in Hong Kong. The Junta was no longer a pur- 
poseless band of exiles awaiting the outcome of a vague 
and tenuous agreement, but a concentration of serious 
Filipino leaders with a relatively large sum of money. 

The exiled Filipino leadership, despite their 
initial display of conciliation and loyalty to Spain, 
had every intention of continuing the revolt. As early 
as November 3, 1897, when the peace terms of Biak-na- 
Bato were being negotiated, Filipe Agoncillo, appointed 


as a representative of the revolutionists, and granted 
full powers of negotiation, had approached the United 
States Consul in Hong Kong, Rounseville Wildman, and 
proposed an alliance. Wildman reported to Secretary of 
State William R. Day: "Mr. Agoncillo offers on behalf 
of his government, alliance offensive and defensive with 
the United States when the United States declares war 
on Spain . . . ." The Filipino, he continued, desired 
arms and ammunition to be paid for "on recognition of 
his government by the United States." Two provinces 

and the customs house at Manila were pledged as 

1 8 
security. This offer was not taken seriously by the 

United States State Department. If Aguinaldo and his 

associates were acting in good faith with de Rivera, 

they would not have authorized Agoncillo to make the 

^^ 19 

T. Agoncillo, a Filipino historian, cites 

additional evidence of insurgent intentions found in a 

letter from the rebel general, Jose Alejandrino, to the 

renowned Filipinologist , Ferdinand Blumentritt : "In 

case peace is accepted it will only be for the money 

involved which we propose to use for the purpose of pro- 

meting immediately another decisive revolution." 


While the Junta was establishing itself in Hong 
Kong, events in the Philippines were not going smoothly 
for the Spanish. They were chagrined by continued 
clashes with the Filipinos but, as these flare-ups 
were scattered and unorganized , they were initially 
attributed to tulisanes (bandits). In a gesture of 
confidence, Primo de Rivera sent home 7,0 00 troops. 

After all, rebels were surrendering and turning in 

their arms. Relieving his mission accomplished, 

de Rivera submitted his resignation as governor- 
general. His optimism was premature; forces vjere 
already working against the truce. The friars, fearful 
of the truce, resorted to intrigues in an attempt to 
destroy the Biak-na-Bato agreement. They exploited the 
administration's fear of another uprising by reporting 
real and imagined native plots, and urged a harder, 
more uncompromising attitude in dealings with the 
natives. As time elapsed with no sign of reforms, the 
general populace gradually became suspicious of Spanish 
intentions. The suspicions became convictions when, in 
March, the popular daily Diario de Manila was suspended 
for demanding the introduction of reforms. People 

began to doubt the truce and began to suspect that de 

Rivera had duped the rebels. 


A general nervousness , especially on the part 
of the Spaniards, permeated Manila. It was noticed 
that former insurgents were secretly grouping. At the 
same time, the desertion rate among native recruits in 

the army was rising; in one case a whole company 

deserted its regiment. 

The authorities , reacting with neither tact nor 
gentleness, imprisoned all suspects. On March 25, the 
Spaniards massacred a boisterous group of Visayan 
sailors gathered in a house in Manila. The victims 
were thought to be conspiring. 

The uneasiness was heightened by the deteriora- 
tion of Spanish-American relations. As early as 
January 20, 1898, Rivera received restricted information 
from the Spanish embassy in Washington. It revealed 
that in the event of war with the United States, the 

Philippines would be the first point of American 

25 . . 

attack. General Basilio Augustm, who relieved Primo 

de Rivera on April 10, appealed to the Filipinos to 

fight for the Spaniards, just as they had done in the 

2 6 
past. Although the appeal attracted some volunteers, 

it was too late to organize a strong native based 

militia; the insurgents were encouraged by rumors of 

impending war between the United States and Spain. 


The peace between the Filipinos and the 
Spaniards was soon broken. In Hong Kong, Aguinaldo 
asserted that de Rivera's failure to institute the 
promised reforms and pay the indemnity according to 
the terms of the agreement was reason enough to nullify 
the pact and resume the revolution. De Rivera retorted 
that reforms were never promised and that a check for 
P200,000 was turned over to his successor, for payment 

to the rebels; but there is no evidence that it was 

ever received. Perhaps the Spaniards had realized 

the futility of buying I'^yalty, for they were very 

aware of the activities of the exiles, who were kept 

under strict surveillance by Spanish officials in Hong 

V 28 

Kong . 

Mabini's assessment that "since both parties 
were acting in bad faith, one of them could not 

complain if the other broke its pledges," sums up the 

situation. There is ample evidence of deceit and 

misunderstanding on both sides but, on the part of the 

Filipinos, the deceit was shrewdly planned, and could 

have been even more successful had it not- been attended 

by greed, jealousy, and pride. 

While Spain faced an imminent confrontation 

with the United States, Aguinaldo had to deal with 


Isabelo Artacho, who had journeyed to Hong Kong to 
present his demands. Artacho ' s arrival in the Crown 
Colony posed a problem for Aguinaldo, and caused a rift 
within the ranks of the exiles. Artacho maintained 
that, as director of commerce, he had the right to 
dispose of the Pi+00,000 held by Aguinaldo. The latter 
at first opposed the demand in silence, then flatly 
refused, revealing that Artacho ' s appointment was a 

ruse to deceive the Spaniards into thinking the money 

was to be used for a commercial venture. This is 

another indication of Aguinaldo 's planned double-cross 

of the Spaniards , though it is obvious that only a few 

of his closest associates were aware of the full 

. ^ ^. 31 

Artacho ' s demands were dangerous, as some of 
the exiles were greedily anticipating a division of 
the money; an accounting of the funds would have 
exposed the insurgents' activities, which were contrary 
to the spirit of the Filipino-Spanish truce. Infu- 
riated by Aguinaldo 's obstinacy, Artacho filed suit in 
the Hong Kong courts against Aguinaldo. An injunction 
was issued "to restrain the defendant [Aguinaldo] and 

each of them from dealing with or parting with the 

possession . . . $400,000, or any part thereof." The 


threat of exposing the Junta ' s purpose was novj very 
real. Counseled by Filipe Agoncillo (his chief 
advisor), Aguinaldo , Colonel Gregorio del Pilar (his 
aide), and Lieutenant J. Leyba (his secretary) secretly 
departed Hong Kong for Singapore under assumed names 
on April 7, 1898. ^^ 

Prior to departing, Aguinaldo withdrew P50,000 
from the bank, and handed over some signed checks to 
Vito Belarmino , whom he appointed his interim successor, 
advising him to spend only the interest for living 
expenses. As his reason for departure, Aguinaldo said 
he wanted to avoid Artacho and legal entanglements; he 
let it be known--presumably to discourage Artacho from 

following--that his destination was Europe and the 

United States. 

The Junta was divided in its feelings . While 
Artacho 's demands and accusations had found some sym- 
pathetic ears, Aguinaldo 's bank withdrawal and hurried, 
secret departure fueled the misgivings of the exiles. 
Two cliques developed: Aguinaldo 's (the more powerful) 
and Artacho ' s . "Bitter enmity," writes Ricarte , "sprang 
up between these two factions which gnashed their teeth 

at each other when they met , but the Spanish-American 

3 5 
War came and both reunited in a common cause." 


Artacho was left holding an "empty bag," for 
Belarmino proved just as uncooperative as Aguinaldo. 
Eventually, through the mediation of several respected 
members of the Junta, a meeting between Aguinaldo and 
Artacho was arranged for May 9, 18 98. It vjas held in 

Hong Kong at the house of a friendly fellow country- 


Artacho now promised to withdraw his claim and 

to ask that the attachment on the Hong Kong and 

Chartered Banks be withdrawn. But, instead of keeping 

his promise, Artacho returned^'-aTid demanded PUO,000 which 

Aguinaldo refused. Artacho finally settled on a sum of 

P5,000, not as his share in the division of the fund, 

but as "alms." Realizing a good bargain, and anxious 

to be rid of Artacho, Aguinaldo gave him the P5,000. A 

new crisis, the Spanish-American War, had developed; it 

required Aguinaldo 's full attention. He had to be able 

to move freely and to have ready access to the money 

in the Hong Kong banks and time was essential. No 

doubt this had been a decisive factor in his buying off 




Filipino historians vary in their account of 
the number of people who accompanied Aguinaldo to 
Hong Kong. The figure of nineteen has been selected 
from Emilio Aguinaldo and Vicente Pacis, A Second Look 
at America (New York: Robert Speller and Sons, 1957), 
p. 28--presumably the most reliable source. Other 
figures ranging from twenty to forty-five may include 
hostages and Filipinos following or preceding Aguinaldo 
to Hong Kong. Agoncillo, Malolos , pp. 44, 683, 
quoting Joaquin Natividad, "The Pacto of Biak-na-Bato , " 
Philippine Free Press, 13 December 1947, indicates 
twenty-four and names twenty, 


John R. M. Taylor, The Philippine Insurrection 

Against the United States, 5 vols. (Pasay City, Philip- 
pines: Eugenic Lopez Foundation, 1971), 1:426-27, 
extracts from correspondence of Jose Barrosso in 
Imparcial , Madrid, December, 18 97. 


Taylor, Philippine Insurrection , 1:418, 

extract from La Politica de Esparia en Filipinas , 

vol. 8, W. E. Retana; and Quirino, The Young Aguinaldo, 

p. 220. 

Governor General de la Torre, a liberal 
Spanish administrator, was relieved in 1871 by Rafael 
de Izquierdo (1871-1873), a reactionary unfriendly to 
the Filipinos , whom he regarded with suspicion 
{personas sospechosas) . The change in administration, 
accompanied by a retraction of privileges, triggered 
the Cavite Mutiny and the consequent execution of three 
native priests. To escape persecution, several 
Filipinos fled to Hong Kong, where they continued to 
support the propaganda movement. T. A. Agoncillo and 
Oscar Alfonso, History of the Filipino People (Quezon 
City, Philippines: Malaya Books, 1967), pp. 142-43. 

Taylor, Philippine^ Insurrection ^ 1:95-96. 

U.S., War Department, Philippine Division, 

Philippine Insurgent Records 1896-1901 With Associated 

Records of the United States War Department 1900-1906 

(Microcopy #M254), 54.9 (hereafter cited as PIR) . 



Taylor, Philippine Insurrection , 1:449, 

extract from PIR^ 10.10. 

^PIR, 54.9. 


Taylor, pyiilipptne Insurrection ^ 1:93-94. 

Agoncillo, Malolos, pp. 73-74. 

Taylor, Philippine Insurrection ■, 1:95. 


Ibid., 1:451-55, extract from PIR^ 53.3. 


Ibid., 1:451-53, extract from PIR, 53.3. 

Jose Salvador Natividad was chosen to approach de 

Rivera, but realizing the gravity of this action, he 

deferred to Paciano Rizal. 


Artemxo Ricarte , Memo%rs of General Artemio 

Rioarte (Manila: Manila National Heroes Commission, 

1963), pp. 88-89. 

Taylor, Philippine Insurrection, 1:453, 
extract from PIR, 53.3. Lieutenant Colonel de Rivera 
was one of the hostages that accompanied Aguinaldo's 
band to Hong Kong. During this period he came to know 
the exiles, evidenced sympathy for their cause, and 
corresponded with them after he was returned to the 

■'■^Ibid., 1:453. 



U.S., Congress, Senate, Consular Reports on 

Philippine Affairs, S. Doc. 62, 55th Cong., 3d sess. 

(5 December 1898 to 3 March 1899), pt . 1, p. 334. 


Agoncillo, Malolos , p. 73. 


Ibid. , p. 7 5 . 


Ibid. , p. 67 . 


Foreman, The Philippine Islands, p. 548. 



Antonio Molina, The Philippines Through the 

Centuries , 2 vols. (Manila: U. S. T. Cooperative, 
1951), 2:143. 


Foreman, The Philippine Islands, pp. 550-56 


25 . 

Molina, Philippines Through the Centuries , 

^^Ibid., 2:145-46. 


Taylor, Philippine Insurrection, 1:91. 

2 8 

Molina, Philippines Through the Centuries , 


29 . . 

Mabmi, Philippine Revolution , p. 49. 


Rxcarte, Memoirs , p. 88. The commercial 

board to which Artacho was appointed director was to 

start a commercial establishment in Hong Kong with the 

indemnity. Taylor, Philippine Insurrection, 1:461. 


Agoncxllo, Malolos , p. 73. 


Taylor, Philippine Insurrection, 1:467, 

extract from PIR, 5 3.6. 


Aguinaldo and Pacis, A Second Look, p. 31. 


Taylor, Philippine Insurrection , 1:97. 


Ricarte , Memoirs , p. 89. 

q c 

Taylor, Philippine Insurrection, 1:515, 
extract from PIR, 2 4.5. 



Prior to Aguinaldo's departure for Singapore, 
the exiles had heard that war between the United States 
and Spain might break out at any time. Their course of 
action in case of hostilities was the subject of many 
far-reaching debates. The most popular plan was to 
employ the money in the Hong Kong banks for the pur- 
chase of arms to resume the revolution coincident with 
the outbreak of war. 

As usual, opinions were varied. Some suggested 
that an alliance be formed with Japan, but this was 
ruled out in view of the Katipunan' s failure to enlist 
Japan's aid during the first phase of the revolution. 
An alliance with the United States was also rejected 

on the basis of the American reaction to Agoncillo's 


offer in late November, 18 97. Since the Junta 

members assumed the Spanish-American War would be 

confined to the Atlantic, direct assistance from the 

Americans seemed unlikely. Spain's forces would be 

divided by the need to defend Cuba. If Spain sent 

reinforcements to the Philippines, the Junta assumed 

the United States Navy would intercept them. 


The arrival of an American Naval squadron in 
Hong Kong on February 17, 18 98, startled Aguinaldo and 
his associates. It was only natural to connect the 
rumors of war with the movement of the squadron, and 
to assume that the force was on its way to Manila. 
Aguinaldo was even more surprised when he received a 
visit from Commander Wood, captain of the gunboat 
Petrel. ^ 

Aguinaldo claims that this and subsequent 

meetings were held on or before April 6, in behalf of 

Commodore George Dewey. In their secret conversations. 

Commander Wood urged Aguinaldo to return to the 

Philippines, organize an army, and liberate the 

country; advice, arms, and ammunition would be supplied 

by the Americans. Wood also revealed American plans 

to engage the Spanish Fleet in Philippine waters . 

Thereupon Aguinaldo asked Wood what the United States 

would do for the Philippines. 

The Commander answered that the United States was 
very great and rich and did not need colonies. In 
view of this, I [Aguinaldo] suggested to the 
Commander how much better it would be to have an 
agreement in writing, and he said that he v\'ould lay 
the matter before Admiral Dewey.' 

Artachc's arrival in Kong Kong interrupted the 

meetings and forced Aguinaldo' s flight to Singapore. 


Aguinaldo, however, carTied with him the idea of 
American aid--an idea which he nurtured and developed 
in Singapore. 

Upon arriving in Singapore on April 23, 1898, 
Aguinaldo became the house guest of Dr. Isidore de 
Santos, a fellow countryman. Although he was traveling 
incognito , he was anticipated by an Englishman, Howard 
W. Bray, who called at the de Santos residence on the 
twenty-third, inquiring for Aguinaldo. Bray, a former 
planter and businessman in the Philippines, claimed to 
be an old friend of Aguinaldo, and told Dr. Santos 
that the American consul general had an important 
message for the insurgent leader. Bray returned that 
evening and again next morning; each time de Santos 
denied Aguinaldo 's presence. On a fourth visit, 
Aguinaldo finally consented to see Bray, v/ho presented 
an urgent invitation to meet Consul E, Spencer Pratt 
of Singapore. Aguinaldo accepted, and a meeting was 
arranged for the evening of the twenty-fourth at "The 
Mansion," a secluded public house. 

At the meeting. Bray and Lieutenant J. M. 
Leyba served as interpreters, since Aguinaldo could 
not speak English fluently and Pratt knew no Spanish. 
From the outset it became apparent that Bray's concern 


about United States-Philippine affairs was influenced 
by his personal interests, Some imply that Bray may 

have interpreted so as to suggest more than Pratt had 

intended to say. Very possibly Bray's interpretations 

were shaded to reflect favorably upon his own motives. 
Nevertheless, Aguinaldo was a responsible leader and 
must take blame or credit for any misinterpretation. 
A series of meetings followed, during which 
Aguinaldo and Pratt seem to have reached mutual agree- 
ment. The subsequent statements of each, however, 
differ as to what was said and promised. In a pamphlet 
written in 1899, Aguinaldo claimed that Pratt, after 
conferring with Admiral Dewey, agreed to 

recognize the independence of the Philippine 
government under a naval protectorate, but that 
there was no necessity to put it in writing, as 
the words of the admiral and the American consul 
were sacred and would be fulfilled .... 

Pratt also promised aid in shipping arms to the 

Philippines . 

Pratt's version of his meetings with Aguinaldo 

is given in a letter to Secretary of State William R. 

Day, dated April 28, 1898. Supposedly, Pratt had 

explained his lack of authority to speak for the 

United States government, pointed out the danger of 

continuing independent action, and convinced Aguinaldo 


of the expediency of cooperating with the American 
fleet. No mention was made of promises of recognition 
or independence. In a subsequent lettei'' dated 
April 30, Pratt wrote: 

The general [Aguinaldo] stated that he hoped 
the United States would assume protection of the 
Philippines for at least long enough to allow the 
inhabitants to establish a government of their 
own, in the organization of which he would desire 
American advice and assistance. 

These questions I told him 1 had no authority 
to discuss.-*-^ 

After the first conference, Pratt cabled Dewey 

and requested a meeting with Aguinaldo in Hong Kong to 

arrange for cooperation between the insurgents and the 

Americans. The commodore replied: "Tell Aguinaldo 

13 . . 

come soon as possible." Pratt succeeded m getting 

the Filipino on his way to Hong Kong aboard the 

British steamer Malacca a day later, April 26. 

Pratt's enthusiasm over what he considered a 

diplomatic coup, exceeded the bounds of discretion. He 

allowed himself to be cajoled into addressing the 

Filipino residents of Singapore, who were celebrating 

the prospect of independence through American aid. 

Pratt's speech was reported in the Straits Times of 

Singapore, clippings of which he blithely enclosed in 

his reports to the State Department. The newspaper 


openly alluded to Pratt's encouragement of the Filipino 
people in their struggle for independence, and praised 
him for his part in arranging the help of the United 
States. Primarily in response to this reporting, the 
State Department sent a letter, dated July 20, admon- 
ishing that Pratt's correspondence 

has occasioned a feeling of disquietude and a 
doubt as to whether some of your acts may not have 
borne a significance and produced an impression 
which this government would feel compelled to 
regret . 

The reprimand made clear that the Department of State 

did not in any way sanction the views expressed in the 

press clippings or the specific arrangement between 

Pratt and Aguinaldo. 

Mr. Pratt was quietly separated from the con- 
sular service. His version remains the weak defense 
of an over-eager and misinformed official who embar- 
rassed his government. Aguinaldo 's account, whether 
true or fabricated, became the basis of a subtle and 
expanding propaganda campaign. 

Bray, the interpreter of dubious character, 
found a new patron in Aguinaldo and aligned himself 
with the Filipino cause. He became an advisor to 
Aguinaldo and was in frequent correspondence with the 
insurgent leader. In a cablegram to the Republican 


Senator George Frisbie Hoar, an anti-imperialist from 
Massachusetts, Bray asserted: "The conditions under 
which Aguinaldo promised to cooperate with Dewey were 
Independence under a protectorate. I ami prepared to 
swear to [t]his." 

Bray's testimony was never taken seriously by 
the American officials, and the members of the Junta 
grew to mistrust him. How much he influenced Aguinaldo 

cannot be determined; however, Aguinaldo later ordered 

1 R 
that he be given $5,000 for his services. Evidence 

strongly suggests that he was dishonest and that what 

he wrote to Senator Hoar was an unscrupulous, selfish 

fabrication . 

Aguinaldo knew, or his advisors should have 

known, that a consul did not normally speak for the 

United States, and that even the president could not 

make treaties without the consent of the Senate. 

Aguinaldo' s acceptance of whatever promises were made 

probably sprang not from naivete or gullibility, but 

from a calculated desire to promote a sympathetic 

reaction and a unifying influence upon the Filipino 

people, while taking advantage of an unexpected chance 

to continue the revolution. 


During Aguinaldo's absence, the members of the 
Junta were not idle. Senor Segismundo Moret , Spanish 
minister of the colonies in 1898, later testified 
before the Spanish Cortes that Navarro, the Spanish 
consul in Kong Kong, had been negotiating with the 
Junta regarding autonomy for the Philippines. Moret 
claimed that an agreement was reached and signed; but 
negotiations were abruptly terminated when the Junta 

learned of the promises of aid from the United 

States. This reaction seems to have hardened the 

attitude of the Spaniards towards the Filipinos and 
ended any thought of granting reforms. 

The prospect of a Spanish-American War and the 
resurgence of unrest in the Philippines was an oppor- 
tunity the Junta encouraged. One circular signed 
Magdalo, Aguinaldo's code name, was apparently written 
in his name while he was still in Singapore. It read: 

To all the Filipino Insurgent Chiefs: 

BRETHEN \_sic']: ... I request you to prepare 
yourselves to fight our old enemies, and to use 
all means within your power to capture their 
forces, as the time is still ripe for the realiza- 
tion of our aspirations for the freedom of the 
country. You must go to fight without doubt, 
without hesitation, and before long I will not fail 
to be with you.-'-^ 

Other circulars presented the insurgent viewpoint with 
regard to Spanish injustices. 


The Junta had reached a point beyond which 
there would be no return. The members realized that 
their future actions would commit them to either war or 
conciliation with Spain. Primarily for the benefit of 
the Spaniards, the Junta presented in April, 18 98, what 
could be termed an expression of national aspirations, 
establishing the minimum conditions under which they 
would live: 

1. "A stable government elected by the people" 

2 . Taxes to be voted on by the people 

3. Freedom of thought, association, and press 

4. The "religion of the natives, and of those 
who may come to the country, to be scrupulously 

5. Christianity to be the "symbol and solid 
foundation of religious institutions, but without 
coercion or imposition" 

6. The maintenance of the clergy as may be 
agreed upon by regional governments, municipalities, or 
popular elective institutions 

7. "Absolute and unconditional respect of 
personal property," and recognition of exclusive rights 
of possession by tenants of the farms of religious 


8. "Possession of . . . tenants [to] be 
respected" without their being required to pay any 
fee, rent, or tax of an oppressive character 

9. Strengthening of the tenants' titles to 
property by preventing the Forest Bureau from search- 
ing for technicalities in titles of ownership 

10. Public administration to be founded and 
operated "on the basis of morality, economy and 
competency, under the direction of the natives" 

11. Recognition of human rights guaranteed by 
a judiciary 

12. "Just codes adapted to our manner of life" 
and based on the principle of equality before the law 

13. Growth and protection of industry by means 
of subsidies, local franchises, and freedom to trade 
with all nations 

14. A liberal banking law, liberty of mer- 
cantile societies and companies, and commercial 

15. The building of roads, canals, and ports, 
and general improvement of all means of transportation 
and communication 


16. Suppression of the Guardia Civil (Civil 
Guard) who trapped, tortured, and executed "so many 
Filipino martyrs" 

17. Introduction of a judicial and adminis- 
trative police system to replace the Guardia Civil 

18. Formation of a "local army, composed of 
native volunteers, limited in number" to the require- 
ments of public order and national defense 

19. A system of public instruction, less 
clerical in nature , providing greater attention to the 
natural and positive sciences, educating females as 
well as males, and under a board of instruction free 
from religious overseeing 

20. The founding of primary schools, high 
schools, normal schools, universities, museums, public 
libraries, model and experimental farms, zoological 
and botanical gardens 

21. Promulgation of laws on hunting, fishing, 
and the preservation and utilization of natural 

22. Free immigration and encouragement of 
colonists and foreign capitalists, the only limitations 
being in regard to "Chinamen" 

The circular concluded: 


We wish in substance, all that is just, 
equitable and orderly; all that may be a means of 
development, prosperity and well-being; all that 
■ may be an effective promoting agency of morality, 
of virtue and respect for the mutual rights of all 
the inhabitants, in both their interior and foreign 
relations . 2C 

The preceding desires represented a last 

attempt at reconciliation of the part of the Filipino 

insurgents. Spain, however, was preoccupied with the 

United States, and Cuba took precedence over the 

Philippine colony, which was by now a burden to the 

Crown. Spanish administrators showed open hostility 

and indifference towards reform. Their lack of tact, 

more than anything else, alienated the Filipinos and 

eroded any remnants of loyalty and sympathy. 

New ties were now sought by the dissidents; 
the circulars advocated a transference of allegiance 
to the United States. The exiles in Hong Kong, aware 
of the new options available through Aguinaldo's 
agreement with Pratt, prepared the people for a new 
ally, urging them to cooperate with the Americans and 
not to mistake them as enemies. They took pains to 
explain the religious views of the United States, and 
assured the natives that Americans were not anti- 
Catholic and possessed an ideal form of government 
which they should strive to emulate. 


Let us fight together; let us second the avenging 
and humane action of the Republic of North America, 
and learn from it, accepting its counsels and 
prescribed forms, the manner of living in order, 
peace and liberty, copying its institutions, which 
are the only suitable ones for the nations which 
desire to reconquer their personality in the 
history of the period through which we are now 

The protection of the great American Republic 
will make you respected and considered by all the 
legally constituted civilized powers. 

"Viva the Philippines! Viva Liberty and 
Justice! Viva the Great Republic of the United 
States of North America! Viva President McKinley 
and Rear-Admiral Dewey!" 

(Signed) "La Junta Patriotica" 

Hong Kong, April, 189822 

On April 25, Dewey received orders to proceed 
to the Philippine Islands and commence operations 
against the Spanish fleet. The admiral delayed his 
departure, however, as he was awaiting the arrival of 
Oscar F. Williams, the United States consul in Manila, 
who was bringing valuable intelligence. 

While waiting for orders in Hong Kong, Dewey 

became acquainted with the local Filipinos. Dewey's 

subsequent testimony before a Senate Committee explains 

his relationship with the Junta: 

I saw these men two or three times myself. They 
seemed to be all very young earnest boys. I did 
not attach much importance to what they said or 
to themselves. 


As for the Filipino leader, Dewey went on to say, 

". . .1 attached so little importance to Aguinaldo 

that I did not wait for him." 

At his first meeting, Dewey certainly did not 

take the Filipinos seriously. Their slight builds and 

youthful appearance belied their capabilities. 

Describing the period just prior to his departure for 

the Philippines, Dewey asserted: 

They [the Filipino exiles] were bothering me. I 
was getting my squadron ready for battle, and 
these little men were coming on board my ship at 
Hong Kong and taking a good deal of my time, and 
I did not attach the slightest importance to any- 
thing they could do . . . .'^'^ 

The American squadron weighed anchor and sailed 

for Manila on April 27 , taking one representative of 

the Junta ^ Jose Alejandrino, as a passenger aboard a 

supply ship. Alejandrino carried the circulars 

designed to prepare the people for Aguinaldo 's return 

and for a fighting alliance with the Americans against 

the Spaniards . 

Several circulars were written by Jose M. Basa, 

a leader among the wealthy Filipino exiles in Hong 

Kong. Since Basa was influential among the wealthy 

and educated in the Philippines, these documents were 

expected to have great impact. Besides espousing close 


support of American forces, Basa's pamphlets suggested 
annexation of the islands. "This is the best oppor- 
tunity which V7e have ever had," Basa stated in one of 

for contriving that our country (all the Philippine 
Archipelago) may be counted as another Star in the 
Great Republic of the United States, great because 
of its wealth, and its constitutional laws. 

Now is the time to offer ourselves to that 
great nation. With America we shall have develop- 
ment in the broadest sense (of advancement) in 
civilization . 

With America we shall be rich, civilized and 
happy. 2 6 

Basa's stance, however, reflected neither 
Aguinaldo's policy nor that of all the members of the 
Junta. Dewey's cool and superior attitude toward the 
exiles was not overlooked by these sensitive men. Many 
of them questioned the intentions of America and 
suspected imperialism lurking behind the actions of the 
United States. But because they needed American as 
well as Filipino support, they prepared for the emer- 
gency in a most deceitful manner. 

Basa's broadsides were never disseminated. 
Instead a new circular marked by his initials 
(J. M. B) was prepared and distributed to convey a 
warning to the revolutionary leaders in the Philip- 


. . . V7e infer that they [the Americans] are 
trying to make colonies of us, although they said 
they would give us independence. The Committee 
\_Juntal decided it advisable to simulate belief at 
the same time equipping ourselves with arms .... 
A part of our forces will aid the Americans by 
fighting with them in order to conceal our real 
intentions, and part will be held in reserve. If 
Am.erica triumphs and proposes a colony we shall 
reject such offer and rise in arms. 27 

Taylor suspects that this document was a 
forgery, as the initials were not in Basa's hand- 
writing. This suspicion is supported by Basa's sub- 
sequent petitions to the United States for annexation 
of the Philippines and citizenship for his family. 
Probably Aguinaldo could not afford to alienate Basa 
and his followers by refusing to authorize the dis- 
tribution of his circulars but he could allow them to 
be sent and then secretly discarded. By forging a new 
document, Aguinaldo could exploit Basa's influence. 

Basa vjould not discover the deceit until too late, for 

2 8 
he remained in Hong Kong. It was a twofold deception 

of the United States and the Filipinos. 

This was a period of doubt and insecurity for 

Aguinaldo. He was not certain of his reception in the 

Philippines. The defiance of his leadership by the 

men left behind, and the rumors filtering into Hong 

Kong that the people questioned his honesty and 


loyalty, were disquieting and shook his determination. 
When he reached Kong Kong from Singapore he discovered, 
to his dismay, that Dewey had left without him. The 
hopes built up in Singapore had sailed with the 
American squadron. 

Aguinaldo and his companions arrived in Hong 
Kong on May 1 under assumed names; only trusted members 
of the Junta were allowed to know where he took up 
residence. His uncertainty regarding the attitude of 
his followers lay behind this secrecy. His popularity 
had not increased since his departure from Hong Kong; 
some of the members still accused him of deserting to 
Europe v;ith their money. To try to mend the breach 
Teodoro Sandico, a close friend of Aguinaldo and a 
spokesman for the Junta ^ who was selected to act as 
go-between, arranged a meeting for May 4. 

In the meantime. Consul Rounseville Wildman, 
apprised of Aguinaldo 's arrival, met the insurgent 

chief and informed him that Dewey had left instructions 

for Aguinaldo to return to the Philippines. The 

news partially assuaged Aguinaldo 's disappointment over 

Dewey's departure. The meeting with Wildman, like the 

meeting with Pratt, is clouded by conflicting accounts. 

According to Edwin Wildman, brother to the consul. 


Aguinaldo was anxious to become an American citizen 
but, as this was impossible, he desired to return to 
the Philippines to work for Dewey. He made no demands 
for independence; indeed, he hoped the Americans would 
annex the Philippines. He promised the consul he would 
fight on the side of the United States and not attempt 
to foment a revolution against them; he would abide by 
the decision of the United States as to the final dis- 
position of the Philippines. His overriding aim was 

to throw off the Spanish yoke. 

Aguinaldo claims that at the conference 

. . . I talked with the Consul about the expedition 
of arms which I had in mind, and we agreed that the 
said Consul and the Filipino, Sr . Teodoro Sandico, 
were to be left in charge of the expedition, I 
turning over that same night to the said gentlemen 
the sum of 50,000 pesos on deposit. 3-'- 

In subsequent conferences, Wildman advised Aguinaldo 

"to establish a Philippine government in a dictatorial 

3 2 
form." He explained that it was the best system for 

carrying out a war. After the war Aguinaldo could 

establish a government based upon the American model. 

Despite the assurances of Wildman, Aguinaldo 

still faced the problem of setting his own house in 

order; the Junta had to be united under his leadership, 

and a concrete plan of action developed. The Junta 


gathered on May 4 to decide on the steps to be taken in 
the wake of Dewey's victory over the Spanish fleet on 
May 1, and to hear Aguinaldo's version of the con- 
ferences with Pratt and Wildman. 

At the Junta meeting, Filipe Agoncillo 
announced Aguinaldo's arrival in Hong Kong and sug- 
gested that he take over as president. After this was 
agreed upon, Aguinaldo was permitted to join the con- 
ference and was administered the oath of office. He 
then recounted his negotiations with Pratt and Wildman, 
claiming that he was not satisfied with his interviews 
with the latter. In the end he requested the advice of 
the Junta on the wisdom of returning to the Philip- 
pines . 

The arguments in favor of his return were 
expressed by Sandico and Agoncillo, who stressed that 
Aguinaldo's prestige was essential to the unity of the 
people and that he alone could prevent dissension. 
Nevertheless, Aguinaldo still balked at returning; he 
feared that Dewey would force him to subscribe to 
"unpatriotic proposals," and that, if he refused, the 
break between them would become obvious to all. 
Aguinaldo was also afraid that the American admiral 
would refuse to furnish arms, without which he would be 


powerless to organize the people; the Spaniards, in 
fact, vjould demand the return of the Pi400,000. Sandico 
and others reassured Aguinaldo on these points, as they 
were convinced the Americans would cooperate and supply 
arms because they needed the help of the insurgents. 
Since the Junta anticipated a possible conflict with 
the United States, it considered this a good oppor- 
tunity to obtain arms at the expense of the Americans . 

The members of the Junta remained adamant and 
continued to press their arguments, reasoning that if 
the Americans remembered the principles expressed in 
their own constitution, they would neither colonize 
nor annex the Philippines. The latter would probably 
be given its independence, guaranteed by America. In 
such a case, Aguinaldo should leave immediately, in 
order to be on hand to prevent a scramble for position 
among the more ambitious insurgent leaders and to 
establish a suitable government. Any delay in 
Aguinaldo 's return, the Junta argued, could be 
attributed to a lack of patriotism and considered a 

criminal weakness that would destroy the hard-won 

reputation of the president. 

The pressure was irresistible; Aguinaldo 

decided to return to the Philippines. On May 7, the 


revenue cutter McCultoch arrived in Hong Kong but, 
since its captain had not received instructions to 
convey Aguinaldo, the insurgent chief was refused 
passage. Aguinaldo 's return to the Philippines by way 
of an American warship was crucial to the Junta's 
plans, and important psychologically. His arrival at 
Cavite, aboard a vessel that was part of the vic- 
torious American fleet, would enhance his prestige and 
credibility; it would support his reputation as an 

unconquerable general who led a charmed life protected 


by an anting - anting . This action would also repre- 

sent an outward show of support by the Americans for 
the Filipinos, would generate confidence among the 
people, and validate the theme of the circulars 
previously distributed. Additionally, a bold and 
dramatic homecoming backed by the armed forces of a 
great nation would insure a multitude of volunteers 
with which to rebuild the insurgent armies. 

An important aspect of Aguinaldo 's preparations 
for returning to the Philippines was the securing of 
arms. For this, Aguinaldo depended upon Wildman, who 
zealously took charge of the project. The consul was 
initially given P50,000 for the shipment of arms to 
the Philippines; before departing, Aguinaldo handed 


him an additional P67,000 to buy and ship a second 
consignment . 

The first shipment of arms, consisting of 2,0 00 
Mauser rifles and 200,000 cartridges, was delivered, 
but the second--according to Aguinaldo, at least--was 
never received. "Mr. Wildman did not comply with this 
last trust, keeping the said sum of money [P67,000], 

q c 

which he refuses to return, according to my advices.'' 

Edwin Wildman 's account of the period states 
only that Aguinaldo concluded arrangements to purchase 

"three thousand stand of arms" in Hong Kong, which were 


landed in Cavite. The consul did not report any arms 

purchases, or his dealings with the insurgents, until 

3 8 
July 18, 1898. This may have reflected his reaction 

to instructions previously received after he reported 

Agoncillo's offer of alliance in November, 1897; at 

that time, the State Department instructed him to 

refuse to be the vehicle of any such offers. 

On July 25, 1898, Wildman wrote Aguinaldo that 

the United States had undertaken the war solely to 

relieve the Cubans from the cruelties they were 

suffering and not for the love of conquest or the hope 

of gain. He also stated that America could be trusted 

to deal with him with honor and justice. The State 


Department promptly telegraphed Wildman: "Your action 

disapproved and you are forbidden to make pledges or 

dxscuss policy." Nevertheless, the consul continued 

to advise and encourage Agumaldo. Such action was 

not only irregular, but also unethical. Like Pratt, 

he did not seem to be attuned to the attitude of the 

State Department towards the Philippines. Possibly, 

as Aguinaldo suggested, he was seeking personal gain 

or glory. 

Once again, Aguinaldo had refused to recognize 
that consuls were not diplomatic agents, and that 
whatever they said in public or in private was their 
own opinion and did not necessarily represent the view 
of the American government. Such an interpretation, 
however, suited the strategy that underlay Aguinaldo 's 
fierce campaign for Filipino independence. 

In mid-May, 1898, the MoCullooh returned to 
Hong Kong; this time Aguinaldo was permitted passage. 
Wildman made the arrangements, insisting upon stealth 
and secrecy, for he wanted to avoid the suspicion of 
the Spanish consul and censure by the neutral British 
authorities who controlled the port. The MaCulloch 
departed the British Crown Colony on the morning of 
May 17, with Aguinaldo and thirteen of his followers 


and arrived at Cavite two days later. True to his 

promise, Agumaldo had returned. 



Aguinaldo and Pacis , A Second Look, pp. 29-30. 


Ib3.d. :, U.S., Congress, Senate, Consular 

Reports, p. 334; and see also Taylor, Philippine 
Insurrection , 1:472. 

Aguinaldo and Pacis, A Second Look. p. 30. 


Taylor, Philippine Insurrection, 1:449, 

extract from Resena Veridica de la Revolucion Filipina, 

por Don Emilio Aguinaldo y Famy, Presidente de la 

Republica Filipina, 2d ed., printed in Nueva Caceres, 

1899. This pamphlet is in the Library of Congress. 

Portions of the original manuscript filed in the 

Philippine Insurgent Records are in the handwriting of 

Filipe Buencamino, a revolutionary and historian of 

the period. References to this meeting will be found 

in Filipino texts, which utilize the Resena Veridica, 

but not usually in U.S. texts. The value of the source 

is questionable; many of the facts cannot be proven, 

and errors are numerous. Some believe that Aguinaldo 

composed this pamphlet purely for propaganda purposes. 

Aguinaldo and Pacis, A Second Look, pp. 30-31. 

It is questionable whether these meetings took place 

but, if so, it is highly improbable that Coirimander 

Wood divulged the plans of the fleet to Aguinaldo. 

Aguinaldo was not certain of Wood's name: "The Petrel 

commander, whose name v/as , I think. Captain Wood 


Taylor, Philippine Insurrection, 1:445, 

extract from Resena Veridica; and Aguinaldo and Pacis, 
A Second Look, p. 31. 


Aguinaldo and Pacis, A Second Look, pp. 32-33. 


Dean C. Worcester, The Philippines Past and 

Present (New York: Macmillan Co., 1930), p. 96; and 
Taylor, Philippine Insurrection, 1:98. 


Taylor, Philippine Insurreation . 1:445, 
extract from Resena Vcridica . Aguinaldo also recounts 
his meetings with Pratt in a subsequent book, A Second 
Look at America, 1957. There are discrepancies between 
the two accounts; since the Resena Veridica was written 
much nearer in time to the events reported, it seems 
likely that it is the more accurate of the two. 

U.S., Congress, Senate, Consular Reports, 
Despatch No. 212, p. 341. 

"""^Ibid., Despatch No. 213, pp. 342-43. 

■'"^Ibid., Despatch No. 212, p. 341. 


Ibid., Despatch No. 87, p. 3 56. An excellent 

analysis of Aguinaldo 's meeting with Pratt is contained 

in James H. Blount, American Occupation of the 

Philippines 2898-1912 (New York: G. P. Putnam's Sons, 

1913), chap. 1, "Mr. Pratt's Serenade," et seq. 


Taylor, Philippine Insurrection , 1:488, 

extract from PIR , 4 5 3.4. 

■"■^Ibid., 1:98. 

PIR, 4 06.5, Letter from St. Clair to Bray; 
PIR, 3 9 8.9, Letter from Bray to Aguinaldo; and 
Worcester, Philippines Past and Present , pp. 105-106, 
compares and analyzes the two letters. 


Taylor, Philippine Insurrection , 2:16-17. 

Moret ' s testimony took place in May, 1902. 

■""^Ibid., 1;491, extract from PIR, 54.2. 

^°Ibid., 1:495-98, extract f rom Pli? , 888.6. 


Agoncillo, Malolos , p. 82. 


Taylor, Philippine Insurrection , 1:493, 499, 

500, extract from PIR, 888.6. 

U.S., Congress, Senate, Hearings on Affairs 
in Philippine Islands, S. Doc. 331, 57th Cong., 1st 
sess. (2 December 1901 to 1 July 1902), pt . 3, p. 2927. 

^^Ibid. , p. 2932. 



LeRoy , Americans in the Philippines ^ 1:180. 

Taylor, Philippine Insurrection ^ 1:523, 
extract from PIR^ 12 04.10. 


Ibid., 1:525, extract from PIR, b^l .1 . 

^^Ibid. , 1:521-25, extract from PIR, 1204.10, 
507.7. This last circular was initialed J. M. B. 


Aguinaldo and Pacis, A Second Look, p. 35. 

However, in Taylor, Philippine Insurrection , 1:474, 
extract from correspondence of R. Wildman, U.S. Consul 
in Hong Kong, S. Doc. 62, Wildman claims: "It was 
May 16 before I could obtain permission from Admiral 
Dewey to allow Aguinaldo to go by the United States 
ship McCulloch . . . ." 


Edwin Wildman, Aguinaldo (Boston: Lothrop 

Publishing Co., 1901), p. 72. 


Taylor, Philippine Insurrection, 1:448, 

extract from Resena Veridica. 



Aguinaldo and Pacis, A Second Look, p. 36. 


Taylor, Philippine Insurrection , 1:505-10, 

extract from PIR, 53.2. 

^^Ibid. , 1:101-102. 

Ibid., 1:448, extract from Resena Veridica. 


Wildman, Aguinaldo, p. 84. 


LeRoy, Americans in the Philippines , 1:183. 

Consul Wildman accidentally drowned in San Francisco 

Bay in 19 01. 

q q 

U.S., Congress, Senate, Consular Reports, 

pp. 3 3 3-34. 

'^^Ibid. , pp. 338-40. 



U.S., Congress, Senate, Address to the 

Congress of the United States by Filipe Buencamino on 

20 August 1899, 57th Cong., 1st sess., 2 June 1902, 

Congressional Record, vol. 35, pt . 6, p. 6180. 

Enclosures with this address consisted of letters from 

Wildman to Aguinaldo concerning arms, Spanish prisoners, 

and the general conduct of the war. 

42 . . ... 

Ibid. Aguinaldo claims m his Eesena 

Vevidioa that both consuls were offered rewards for 
their assistance. 


Taylor, Philippine Insurrection ■> 1:103. 



The complexion of the Junta changed when 
Aguinaldo departed from Hong Kong. In Hong Kong, 
Aguinaldo had been recognized for his leadership but 
was not always fully supported. Mainly through force 
of character and control of funds, he had succeeded in 
keeping the Junta together. Although the bond was 
tenuous, it was enough to promote his ambitions. Basic 
differences, scarcely submerged during Aguinaldo ' s 
presence, surfaced as soon as the McCulloch had dropped 
below the horizon. 

The men close to Aguinaldo, committed to 
independence, formed the "inner circle" of the Junta. 
The early exiles in Hong Kong--wealthy and influential 
— constituted the "outer circle," which desired the 
annexation of the Philippines by America, or the status 
of a protectorate. Since their financial support and 
influence were needed desperately, Aguinaldo courted 
them. They expressed their desires and wrote cir- 
culars, in the belief that they were influencing 


policies. Aguinaldo, however, never allowed them to 
say much about the plans of the Junta. 

Wildman repoi-'ted on May 6 , and again on the 
fourteenth that Cortes, Basa, Rosario, and Gonzaga, 
patriai"'chs of wealthy Filipino families in Hong Kong, 
offered their fortunes to the United States and desired 
to become American citizens. Not content to express 
their desires to Wildman, these men sent cables to 
Senator Marcus Alonzo Hanna of Ohio, imploring him in 

the name of "humanity" and "Christianity" to aid in 

. . . 2 . . 

obtainxng annexation. Cabling President McKinley on 

August 8, Basa claimed that well-to-do, educated 

Filipinos prayed for a protectorate or annexation. 

Some may have proclaimed allegiance to insure their 

interests. Agoncillo wrote Aguinaldo that 

Maximo Cortes gave PI 0,0 00 to the American Consul 
[WildmanJ . . . because the latter promised him 
to write to the Admiral [Dewey] not to bombard his 
real estate in Manila.*^ 

Since many of the wealthy Filipinos in Hong 
Kong believed that Aguinaldo was fighting for annexa- 
tion to the United States, they contributed money 
through the Junta. Although Aguinaldo had no intention 
of using the donations for that purpose, neither he nor 
the Junta were about to question the ethics of 


accepting the money, for they needed all the help they 
could get. The Junta's money was banked in time 
deposit, and only ?50,000 — the money Aguinaldo withdrew 

before leaving for Singapore--was immediately available 


to the insurgents. 

When it became clear that Aguinaldo 's goal was 
independence, most of the wealthy exiles withdrew their 
financial support. A few continued to align themselves 
with Aguinaldo and contributed what they could as 
evidence of their preference for independence rather 
than annexation. The Philippine Insurgent Records 
register a donation of P7,000 to the Hong Kong Junta 
by Juana Montilla from Yisaya. In another instance, a 
rich Ilongo, Esteban de la Rama, donated twelve rifles 
and twelve revolvers to the Junta for shipment to the 

The "insiders" did not view the activities of 

the "outsiders" with much alarm, for they believed 

erroneously that the influence of the wealthy Filipinos 

was minimal. Consul Wildman wrote to the Department of 

State from Hong Kong in July, 18 98: 

I believe I know the sentiments of the politi- 
cal leaders and of the moneyed men among the 
insurgents, and, in spite of all statements to the 
contrary, I knovj that they are fighting for annexa- 
tion to the United States first, and for 


independence secondly, if the United States decides 
to decline the sovereignty of the islands. In fact 
I have had the most prominent leaders call on me 
and they would not raise one finger unless I could 
assure them that the United States intended to give 
them United States citizenship if they wished it . '^ 

Wildman believed that the wealthy exiles were 
the leaders of the Junta or, at the very least, wielded 
tremendous influence. His conclusion was incorrect 
but, since he was a respected and presumably respon- 
sible official, the impact of his evaluation affected 
the cause of the insurgents. 

The responsibility of keeping the Junta 
together was inherited by Filipe Agoncillo. He was by 
far the most capable man among those left in Hong Kong, 
and he was loyal to Aguinaldo's purpose. Agoncillo was 
not at this time concerned about the actions of the 
wealthy Filipinos, for he was immediately confronted 
with a challenge from within the inner circle. His 
first letter to Aguinaldo on May 27, 1898, complained 
that "Sandico is bitterly criticising me to our 


companions." In the same letter, but dated the next 
day, Agoncillo added "that Sandico, induced by the 

friends of Artacho , has for some time past been 


criticising me to the companions." Sandico and 

several companions, he continued, had resigned from, the 


Junta with the intention of establishing another 

committee composed of the friends of Artacho . 

Sandico's friendship and sympathy for Artacho 

were reprehensible to Agoncillo, who believed that 

Artacho vjas a greedy opportunist and traitor. Another 

area of disagreement was the procurement and shipment 

of arms and ammunition. Confident that the consul 

could assure the safety and success of the shipment, 

Sandico and his followers wanted the arms sent through 

Wildman. On the other hand, Agoncillo and his group 

were opposed to the use of a middleman, particularly a 

third-party alien. Agoncillo reasoned: 

As far as politics are concerned, is it advisable 
that the consul should know the number of arms 
sent which will enable him to estimate our 
strength? I think it is not. Though I am of the 
opinion that we should pay the consul every 
respect, still I believe that we should not 
belittle ourselves to the extent of being in a 
relation of a child to a guardian, because such 
being the case, what will he think of us and what 
information shall he give to his government?!'^ 

Apparently Agoncillo confronted Sandico and 

won him over. Sandico withdrew his resignation, and 

presumably a meeting to establish another revolutionary 

committee never occurred. Confrontations of this 

sort were annoying to Agoncillo, who expressed his 

distaste to Aguinaldo: 



I will not state at length everything which has 
happened here, because I do not wish you to become 
disgusted. But I can tell you that there are many 
here with great and selfish ambitions. ^ 

Agoncillo's concern to maintain the unity and 

effectiveness of the Junta transcended his personal 

feelings about the actions of Sandico's faction. 

13 . . . . 

Agoncillo's group held the positions of power within 

the Junta, while Sandico's group, although capable of 
destructively splitting the Junta, was not strong 
enough to usurp Agoncillo's power. Because of loyalty 
to Aguinaldo and of the importance of the Junta to 
the revolutionary cause, Agoncillo never made an overt 
move against Sandico or his followers . Slight appease- 
ment was preferable to the destruction of the Junta. 
Steering clear of an open clash with Sandico, Agoncillo 
did not demand an accounting of the funds used in the 
first arms-buying operation. At the direction of 
Aguinaldo, the Junta reluctantly assigned another 
P50,000 to Sandico for the purchase of more war 
materials . 

The first arms transaction arranged by Sandico 
had ended in disaster. He had entrusted nearly 
Pi|7,00 to an American in Hong Kong for the purchase • 
of arms which were never bought. The money could not 
be recovered, for such transactions were illegal and 


the British regarded arms as contraband of war. Some 
members of the Junta suspected Sandico of taking part 
of the money. Cn May 30, Agoncillo wrote to Aguinaldo 
that many of the m.embers had no confidence in Sandico, 
and ended his letter with the comment that "those v.'ho 
work in good faith in this world, never seem to have 


luck, but It is the rascal who enjoys success." It 
is clear that the "rascal" Agoncillo referred to was 

Despite the Junta's views, Sandico arranged a 
second transaction through an intermediary to whom he 
paid P60,000 for 2,000 rifles and 200,000 rounds of 
ammunition. The arms were extremely expensive; 
included in their cost was the price of the transport 
vessel and a staggering P12,673 commission for the 
middleman. In June, 18 98, Sandico sailed with the arms 
to Cavite, fearing for his life; the companions sent 
with him by the Junta were Filipinos who believed he 

was a traitor. Although his worries were justified, 

Sandico succeeded in delivering the arms. 

Despite such internal problems, the Junta 

procured and shipped more arms to the Philippines. 

Belarmino reported on June 7, that two consignments 

consisting of 9,000 rifles and 3,000 cartridges were 


scheduled to reach the Philippines shortly, but two 
cannon were left behind in the haste to get the ship- 
ment underway. 

By the middle of June, the Junta's ability to 
ship arms was severely hampered, this time from an 
outside source. The Spanish consul, keeping a close 
watch, protested the action of the Junta to the Hong 
Kong authorities. This forced the British officials to 

take action; they subsequently uncovered a cache of 

. . . . . . 17 

arms and ammunition intended for the Philippines. 

This violation of British neutrality resulted in a 

prohibition of Filipino movement to and from the Crown 

Colony. Even the American consular launch was searched 

en route to visit vessels in the harbor. Neverthe- 
less, the Hong Kong Junta struggled on. 

In view of the increased vigilance of the 
British authorities and the difficulty in procuring 
war materials in Hong Kong, the Junta began to explore 
other sources of arms. Agoncillo appointed two trusted 
men, Mariano Ponce and Faustino Lichauco, to go to 
Japan to ascertain the possibility of enlisting 
assistance. When the Japanese proved amenable to the 
idea of selling arms. Ponce and Lichauco made arrange- 
ments for the purchase and requested money from the 


Hong Kong Junta. The original order was for P30,000, 
which was quickly made available; but the cost of a 
schooner to transport weapons left only enough money 
to purchase 1,000 rifles. Since the cost of transporta- 
tion was fixed, Ponce realized the economy of increasing 
the size of the shipment and accordingly requested 
additional funds. Through an oversight, the check 
which the Junta sent to Japan was not transferable, and 
could only be cashed in Hong Kong on the due date. 
The remittance had to be returned and exchanged for 
cash. In the meantime, the Japanese, who were ready to 
conclude the transaction, requested P200,000 to be 
deposited in the Yokohama Specie Bank. Since the 
Filipinos in Yokohama did not have this sum, they 
delayed, waiting for the cash to arrive from Hong Kong. 
Meanwhile, open hostilities had broken out between 
American and Filipino forces. Thereupon the Japanese, 

not wishing to be involved, suspended the trans- 

19 i 

action. I 

Open help from Japan could not be expected as 

long as the United States was involved with the , 

Philippines. Active assistance of the Filipino 

insurgents, especially with United States forces in 

the Philippines, would surely be interpreted as a sign 


of belligerency to the United States, a nation with 

which Japan had no desire to go to war. 

Two more feckless attempts were made to pur- 
chase guns from the Japanese. In April, 1899, a vessel 
loaded with arms sank in a typhoon a hundred miles from 
Shanghai. A second shipment could not be landed in the 
Philippines due to the vigilance of American coastal 
patrols, now alert to Filipino attempts to import arms. 
It was diverted to Formosa and eventually transferred 
to the Chinese mainland where it fell into the hands 

of supporters of the Chinese revolutionary, Sun 

V ^ 21 

Despite its officially neutral policy, Japan 

did support the Filipino cause. A number of Japanese 

veterans of the Sino-Japanese War volunteered to fight 

for the Filipinos; cloth, uniforms, and a few weapons 

were also obtained. Newspapers and officials were 

generally in favor of Philippine independence; a few 


even criticized alleged American imperialism. 

Japanese sympathy, enthusiasm, and involvement never- 
theless remained on an individual, personal level. 

While the Junta was struggling to obtain more 
arms for Aguinaldo, the insurgent leader was solidify- 
ing his power among the people. The arms already 


received and the local support he was attracting gave 
him a degree of independence fi'-om the Americans 
blockading Manila Bay. Time was essential, however; 
the arrival of American reinforcements would undermine 
Aguinaldo ' s bargaining position--the main strength of 
which was Aguinaldo 's control of land forces necessary 
to maintain the siege of Manila. From May 21 to 
May 24, Aguinaldo issued orders for an uprising against 
Spain. On the twenty-fourth, he proclaimed himself 
dictator, promising to relinquish his power to a 
president and cabinet appointed by a constitutional 

assembly as soon as the islands were under his 

control . 

The first American troops sailed from San 

Francisco on May 25, approximately a month before they 

reached their destination. During this time Aguinaldo 

had to obtain control of Spanish territory upon which 

to establish a government sufficient to convince the 

Americans of the legitimacy of his leadership. The 

Hong Kong Junta and Aguinaldo would then ask for the 

recognitxon of their government. 

Ultimate success was dependent upon the 

Filipinos' ability to convince foreign governments of 

their ability to rule themselves. Foremost among 


those whom they wanted to impress was the United 

States, whose recognition, the Filipino leaders 
believed, would contribute to world acceptance. A 
republican form of government was chosen for its 
appeal to the American people. The Philippines would 
become the first Christian Asiatic republic, a nomen- 
clature which was expected to elicit sympathy from 

Throughout May and the early part of June, the 
insurgents were extremely successful. Eager volunteers 
flocked to their standard. On June 12, 18 98, at 

Cavite Vie jo, Aguinaldo proclaimed the independence of 


the Philippines. He was convinced that there was 

tremendous propaganda value in such action; the people 
would now have a real cause and would be inspired to 
fight the Spaniards all the more fiercely. 
Aguinaldo' s successes and rapidly growing military 

strength gave him confidence and influenced his 

decision to remove doubts as to his real intentions. 

Further insight into Aguinaldo 's reason for 

proclaiming Philippine independence at this time is 

presented by Mabini, who had been just introduced to 

him: ! 


The American representatives had limited themselves 
to ambiguous verbal promises, which Mr. Aguinaldo 
had accepted because he ardently desired to return 
to the islands, fearful that other influential 
Filipinos should (rob him of glory and) reach an 
understanding with the Americans in the name of 
the people. 

In this same statement, Mabini also criticized 

Aguinaldo 's decision. 

I realized also that the proclamation of inde- 
pendence which was being made that day was 
premature and imprudent because the Americans 
were concealing their true designs while we were 
making ours manifest. I foresaw, of course, that 
because of this want of caution the American 
commanders and forces would be on guard against 
the revolutionists, and the United States consuls 
on the China coast would sabotage the purchase of 
arms for the revolution. 28 

With the establishment of a dictatorial 
government and the proclamation of Philippine inde- 
pendence, the Hong Kong Junta was assigned additional 
duties. Its location in the British Crown Colony 
facilitated contact with foreign countries. The Junta 
was still a collection of the more educated and capable 
Filipino nationalists who, due to the political state 
of affairs, could not conveniently return home. Since, 
in the establishment of a government, Aguinaldo would 
need a corps of representatives, the exiles in Hong 
Kong would be logical and convenient choices. 
Agoncillo, the head of the Junta, was recognized as 


one of the ablest diplomats among the insurgents. 
Crucial to Aguinaldo's plans was the task of drawing 
the United States into an open alliance and other 
foreign powers into a sympathetic recognition of 
Filipino belligerency. It was Aguinaldo's intention 
to utilize the Hong Kong Junta to accomplish this end. 
After setting up a central government, his next objec- 
tive was to gain the attention of the foreign powers; 
recognition, he felt sure, would eventually follow. 
On June 23, 1898, Aguinaldo issued a decree 
which established the BepartTuent of Foreign Relations, 
consisting of three bureaus--Diplomacy , Navy, and 
Commerce. The first bureau was to 

consider and dispatch all the business which 
pertains to the direction of diplomatic negotia- 
tions with other powers, and the correspondence 
"of this government with the same. 

In addition, 

the Government shall establish a Revolutionary 
Committee abroad, composed of an undetermined 
number of the most competent persons of the 
Philippine Archipelago. 

The Delegation of Diplomacy shall take steps 
for and negotiate with foreign cabinets the 
recognition of the Philippine belligerency and 
independence. 29 

This committee was designed to take charge of what 

could only be called a "propaganda corps." 


Following an early suggestion made by 

Agoncillo, Aguinaldo wrote to him on August 7, 18 98, 

with instructions to go to the United States as soon 

as possible, 

so that McKinley's government may know our true 
situation. Make him understand that our country 
has its own government, that civil organizations 
exist in the provinces already taken and soon the 
congress of representatives of these provinces 
will meet. Tell them that they cannot do with the 
Philippines as they wish, because many misfortunes 
may happen both to us and to them if we do not 
come to an agreement as to our future I'elations. 


A letter for President McKinley is herewith 
sent to you, so that he may recognize you as m.y 
representative. . . . When congress shall have 
been assembled and said arrangements made, I will 
send you your proper credentials. 

The policy which you will pursue in the United 
States is the following: 

Make them understand that whatever may be their 
intentions towards us, that it is not possible for 
them to overrule the sentiments of the people 
represented by the government, and they must first 
recognize it if we are to come to an agreement. 
Still do not accept any contracts or give any 
promises respecting protection or annexation, 
because we will see first if we can obtain inde- 
pendence. This is what we shall endeavor to 
secure meanwhile if it should be possible to do so, 
still give them to understand in a way that you 
are unable to bind yourself but that once we are 
independent we will be able to make arrangements 
with them. 

I have entire confidence in your recognized 
ability and wisdom which I also knew when we were 
companions, and 1 hope you will now pull all your 
moral courage together, because we will be between 
tigers and lions. Still, I believe you will be 
able to snatch our people away from their 
clutches . 31 


Agoncillo was also instructed to publish the 
"Act of Proclamation of Independence" and the "Mani- 
festo to Foreign Governments" in the Hong Kong 

papers. On August 10, Aguinaldo again urged 

Agoncillo to leave for America immediately, and to 

leave the Junta to others. On the same day Aguinaldo 

penned instructions for Sandico and, in order to 
legitimize the Hong Kong Junta ^ he issued a decree 
making the Junta a permanent and official body. 
Sandico was instructed, first, to unify all Filipino 
subjects in Hong Kong and to pei'suade those of con- 
trary opinions to cooperate in the government's 
(Aguinaldo ' s) policy; second, to prepare and organize 
the Revolutionary Committee; and, third, to struggle 
for independence while maintaining good terms with 

entreating the recognition of the Filipino Govern- 
ment under pretext that such recognition consti- 
tutes a sine qua non before any terms of agreement 
between the United States and "the Philippines." 

Sandico was to seek an alliance with the United States 
even if the Carolines and Marianas had to be sacri- 
ficed, but protection or annexation were to be 
considered acceptable only if independence by force of 
arms or diplomacy was impossible. Agoncillo was also 


to maintain communication with correspondents in Paris 

and London, and negotiate with foreign commercial 


Aguinaldo's decree legitimizing the Junta 

listed himself as head of the Department of Foreign 

Affairs under which was established a managing board, 

members, and correspondents. Don Vicente Ilustre, a 

Filipino living in Paris, was appointed president of 

the board, and Sandico secretary. The members were all 

residents of Hong Kong. Correspondents were appointed 

to various foreign countries: Pedro P. Roxas to 

France, Antonio Regidor to England, and Filipe 

Agoncillo to the United States. 

While the managing board represented the 
government abroad, it required special authority to 
conclude treaties. The board administered the funds 
of the government abroad, and recommended the appoint- 
ment of correspondents in foreign countries. Further 
duties of the board encompassed all work of propaganda 
abroad, all diplomatic negotiations, and the prepara- 
tion of expeditions necessary for the revolution. 
Under the guidance of Aguinaldo's decrees, the Hong 
Kong Junta functioned as a listening post for the 


revolutionary government, a procurement office for war 
materials, and a propaganda agency. 

Many of the appointments seem political in 
nature; they did not facilitate a smooth operation, but 
promoted unity and loyalty to Aguinaldo's government. 
Since many appointed to membership and offices within 
the committee were absent, Aguinaldo issued another 
decree on August 24; it recreated the Revolutionary 
Committee at Hong Kong, specifically outlining its 

duties, defining its powers, and specifying its 


In addition, by a decree dated November 23, 

1898, Aguinaldo created a commission 

charged with informing the civilized world of the 

true political and social condition of the country 

and of the capability of the Filipinos to govern 

themselves, as also to petition the foreign 

governments for the official recognition of the 

independence and government of the Philippines 
... .38 

Agoncillo was appointed president of this commission 
and the members were authorized to "appear before any 

legally recognized government and represent the 

interests of the Filipinos before the same . . . ." 

On August 13, 1898, Manila surrendered to the 

American forces. The Filipino insurgents were refused 

entry into the city and relations quickly became 


strained. It seemed increasingly clear to some of the 
Filipino leaders that the Americans had intentions 
different from those anticipated. Implied promises 
were not materializing. If they had not realized it 
earlier, the Filipinos now realized that they must 
look to their own interests and conduct their own 
negotiations with authorized American and other foreign 
representatives. The hasty organization of a diplo- 
matic corps was the result. 

On August 26, Agoncillo wrote to Aguinaldo for 
his credentials to the United States and suggested 

that one or two more representatives be sent with him 

in order to form a diplomatic mission. Agoncillo 

wanted to keep up appearances of friendship for the 

Americans but continue preparations for war. 

Four days later, Aguinaldo sent Agoncillo his 

final instructions, informing him that Major General 

Wesley Merritt, Commander of the Third Expeditionary 

Force, was leaving Manila to take part in the Paris 

Peace Conference. Agoncillo was to 

proceed as quickly as possible to America, in order 
to know what takes place. If perchance we should 
go back to Spanish control, ask them to help us 
as the French helped them during their own revolu- 
tion and ask also the terms. 

I am not yet informed if it is true that our 
representatives are to be admitted to the 


Coirjnission ; if they should be admitted, go immedi- 
ately to the place where they will meet, which it 
is said here will be Paris, September 15th, and if 
among our countrymen there or in London there be 
one who will agree with the policy of the govern- 
ment, according to your instructions, propose him 
at once, so that credential Isicl may be sent him. 

I am hastening the constitution of Congress so 
that it may at once consider some resolutions. In 
whatever agreement you may make you will insert as 
a condition the ratification of this government. 

As early as possible I will transmit to you 
the names of those composing the committee in 
Hong Kong according to the enclosed decree. You 
can leave all the affairs I have confided to you 
in the hands of Galicano [Apacible] and Sefior 
Crisanto Lichauco until the Board of Directors 
(.Junta Direativa) shall be established . ^1 

At the same time, Aguinaldo instructed the various 

diplomatic representatives abroad to entangle the 

United States in the affairs of the Philippines so that 

foreign powers might be prevented from dividing up the 

country. The Filipinos were afraid that, like China, 

the Philippines would be partitioned by Western powers. 

If there were to be absorption by a foreign power, 

America was preferable. 

With Agoncillo about to leave for the United 

States, Galicano Apacible, one of the leaders of the 

Junta, prepared to assume Agoncillo 's duties in Hong 

Kong. The fragile harmony of the Junta was disrupted 

by these changes. Apacible was sympathetic to 

Agoncillo, not Sandico. Not achieving his desires in 


Hong Kong and unable to achieve dominance over the 
Junta, Sandico returned to Manila, where he worked for 
Aguinaldo and the Americans. Basa, Cortes, and other 
annexationists, realizing that their position differed 
from that of the revolutionary cadre, defected to form 
a separate, loosely organized group lobbying for 
annexation. Others also resigned from the Junta, and, 
as a result, the Junta reorganized itself in November, 
1898, and appointed new officers. Galicano Apacible 

became president, and Howard Bray was retained as press 

rfepresentative . 

The steamer China arrived in Hong Kong on 

September 1, 1898, with General Merritt and other 

officers on their way to Paris to appear before the 

Peace Commission. The Junta received permission from 

Merritt, the ranking officer, for Agoncillo to travel 

aboard the vessel to the United States. Merritt went 

to Paris by way of Suez, and General Francis V. Green, 

of the United States Volunteers, who was returning to 

the United States, as a courtesy, offered to assist 

Agoncillo during the voyage. On September 2, the 

S.S. China departed Hong Kong with Agoncillo and Sixto 

Lopez, his secretary. 


During the voyage Agoncillo tried to convince 
Green of the Filipinos' ability to sustain an inde- 
pendent government. Apparently he was successful, for 

Green went out of his way to assist them. 

Agoncillo, accompanied by Green, arrived in 
Washington on September 27. Prior to departing Hong 
Kong, Agoncillo had tried to arrange a meeting with 
McKinley; he sent a telegram congratulating the presi- 
dent on the close of war and occupation of Manila, and 

requesting representation on the Peace Commission to 

decide the future of the Philippine Islands. McKinley 

did not reply. In the American capital, Agoncillo, 

through Green, requested an official conference, but 

the president regretfully refused, although he expressed 

a willingness to see Agoncillo unofficially. The 

United States was in the process of negotiating a peace 
treaty with Spain; the revolutionary government, 
declared by i^guinaldo, had never been recognized and 
officially did not exist. Therefore, official recog- 
nition of Agoncillo would have constituted recognition 
of the Philippine government. 

When the State Department also refused to 
accept his credentials, Agoncillo realized the futility 
of his position and arranged to see the president 


unofficially. He was received privately by McKinley 
on October 1, and given the opportunity to present his 
case. Recounting the Filipinos' struggle to be free, 
Agoncillo informed the president that the Filipinos 
desired representation on the Paris Peace Commission. 
Sensing that this request would not be permitted, 
Agoncillo requested permission to present the Filipino 
case to the United States commissioners. McKinley in 
turn suggested that the presentation be personal, 
without Agoncillo' s official designation. Since 
insistence on an official note would result in complete 
rejection, Agoncillo acceded. On October 3, he sub- 
mitted his note to Assistant Secretary of State Alvey 
A. Adee , who in turn showed it to the president. The 
document was accepted with certain amendments suggested 
by McKinley. In essence, the note claimed the 

existence of a "lawful de facto government" and 

requested official recognition of this fact. 

A decision was made to forward the note to the 
American commissioners in Paris, and Agoncillo was 
advised to go to France to confer in person with them. 
It is apparent, in retrospect, that Agoncillo 's 
presence was an embarrassment to McKinley 's adminis- 
tration, which had no intention of recognizing the 


Filipino government. Agoncillo telegraphed Aguinaldo 

that he had been well received, but the Paris Commis- 
sion would decide to whom the Philippines belonged. 
Although many people thought that the Philippines would 
be given independence, Agoncillo himself was not 
optimistic and advised Aguinaldo to prepare for war. 

Before leaving for Paris, Agoncillo tried to 
generate greater influence by sympathizers of the 
Filipino cause. He appealed to the Ajnerican Episcopal 
Bishops, who were holding a conference in Washington, 
ta back the Philippine independence movement. Pre- 
sumably they would have sympathy for the victims of a 
situation brought about by Catholicism; but the bishops 
failed to respond. In general, Protestant missionary 
groups were interested in the Philippines as a new 
field for their endeavors, which would be facilitated 
by annexation. Although the Philippine population was 
almost entirely Catholic, many believed that the people 
needed to be Christianized. 

In Paris, Agoncillo continued his desperate 
attempts to gain support. He contacted Senator Cushman 
Davis of Minnesota, one of the American commissioners, 
but Davis refused to commit himself and claimed that 
the Filipino question had not yet been discussed. 


Agoncillo repeatedly requested a hearing by the peace 
commissioners, but they refused. The hopelessness of 
his cause was fast becoming evident and Agoncillo 
wrote Apacible to hurry the purchase of arms and pre- 
pare for probable conflict with America, but not to 
provoke war. 

On December 10, 1898, the final draft of the 
Paris Treaty was signed, providing for the cession of 
the entire archipelago to the United States. Spain 
would be paid $20,000,000. 

As a last resort, on December 12, Agoncillo 

released to the press and foreign legations in Paris 

a formal protest against 

any resolutions agreed upon at the peace con- 
ference in Paris as long as the judicial, politi- 
cal, and independent personality of the Filipino 
people is entirely unrecognized . ^3 

Although the results of the peace conference 
were disappointing and the Filipino cause seemed hope- 
less, there was still a chance that the United States 
Senate would not ratify the treaty. Substantial 
opposition to annexation still existed. President 
McKinley seems to have been undecided until he made a 
tour of the western states and concluded that the 
people supported acquisition of the Philippines. This 


was not the only influence upon his decision to ask for 
cession of the entire archipelago, McKinley had 
received numerous letters from Filipinos in Kong Kong 
begging for American citizenship; in addition there 
were strong comm.ercial, military, and missionary 
lobbies for annexation. The president claimed, in a 
discussion with the General Missionary Committee of the 
Methodist Episcopal Church, that he had gone down on 

his knees to God and prayed for guidance in this 


crucial decision. However McKinley had made up his 

mind, the Senate remained divided between imperialists 
and anti-imperialists, between expansionists and anti- 
expansionists . 

In the Philippines and Hong Kong, the rebel 
leaders realized the hopelessness of the situation, and 
were preparing for armed conflict. Still, they con- 
tinued to explore every way to attain recognition. 
They proposed an agreement of peace and friendship 
with Spain as soon as the latter would recognize an 
independent Philippine government. The related pro- 
posals were not as favorable to Spain as the Paris 
Peace Treaty, nor did they preclude the possibility of 

re-opening hostilities against the United States. 

Spain did not take the proposal seriously. Aguxnaldo 


wrote McKinley a letter proposing the Philippines be 
made a protectorate under the United States, but this 
too was Ignored. 

In Washington, Agoncillo tried to arrange an 

interview with McKinley. His supplications went 

unanswered. On January 11, 1899, Agoncillo wrote to 

Secretary of State John Hay, imploring him to consider 

mutual communications. Honoring the official policy 

of nonrecognition. Hay disregarded Agoncillo' s 

5 8 
letters. Agoncillo' s memorial to the Senate, dated 

January 30, 189 9, was his last attempt at convincing 

the government of the United States to recognize the 

Philippines. He argued that Spain had had no right to 


cede the Philippines to the United States. Agoncillo 

submitted this memorial to Secretary Hay for presenta- 
tion to Congress, but there was no acknowledgment by 

On February 5, 189 9, one day before the 
scheduled Senate vote on the treaty, hostilities broke 
out between Filipino and American troops. Unknown to 
the Filipino insurgents, the Senate was deadlocked on 
ratification. The fighting seems to have tipped the 
scales, for it broke the psychological restraints on 
those senators who could not make up their minds. The 


Senate ratified the treaty next day, by a vote of 
fifty-seven to twenty-seven--one vote more than the 
necessary two-thirds. 

Agoncillo's hopes for Philippine independence 
evaporated with the Senate's ratification of the peace 
treaty. Attacked by the press as a possible enemy 
agent, Agoncillo complained to Secretary Hay, but 
received no response. Friends warned the Filipino 
diplomat of the possibility of arrest; not wishing to 
suffer this embarrassment, Agoncillo left quietly for 
Canada. Here he was out of touch with events, 
followed by American Secret Service men, and afraid 
to communicate by telegraph since facilities in the 
Philippines were now controlled by the United States, 
Although the Canadians offered him sanctuary, Agoncillo 
boarded a steamer for Europe. He had failed, and his 

R 9 

mission to the United States was ended. 



Wildman to the Department of State, 6 May 
1898, in Coyisular despatches ^ Book 19, Hong Kong, 
1 June 1895 to 30 April 1899. 


Taylor, Philippine Insurrection , 1:101. 

PIR, 399.31, Basa to President McXinley, 

8 August 1898. 

Taylor, Philippine Insurrection , 3:240, 

extract from PIR, 471.8. This document impinges on the 

integrity of the consul. See also Taylor, Philippine 

Insurrection, 1:448, extract from Resena Veridica. 

^Ibid., 1:101. 

^Ibid., 3:240-41, extract from PIR, 1060.5. 

U.S., Congress, Senate, Consular Reports, 

pt . 1; and Taylor, Philippine Insurrection, 2:37. 

Taylor, Philippine Insurrection, 3:239, 
extract from PIR, 471 . 8 , 1060 . 5 . 

^Ibid., 3:240. 

■""^Ibid, , 3:239. 

■'"■'"Ibid., 3:240-42, extract from PIR, 471. 


"^^Ibid., 3:240-42, extract from PIR, 471.8 


Agoncillo's group consisted of Jose 

Alejandrino, Faustino Lichauco, Galicano Apacible, 
and Justo Lukban . 


Taylor, Philippine Insurrection, 3:243, 

extract from PIR, 4 9 3.9. 

■'"^Ibid., 2:488, extract from PIR, 567.11. 
■'"^Ibid., 3:245, extract from PIR, 1060.5. 


1 7 

Ibid., 3:250, extract from PIR^ 4.7. 

Ibid., 3:244, extract from PIR^ 1060.5. 


S. V. Epistola, "The Hong Kong Junta," Social 

Studies Humanities Review, 13 April 1970, pp. 30-31. 


PIR, 477.1, Agoncillo to Aguinaldo, Hong 

Kong, 26 August 1898. 


Agoncillo, Malolos, p. 320; PIR, 399.1; cf. 

Epistola, "Hong Kong Junta," pp. 31-3 2; and Eufronio 
M. Alip, Philippine-Japanese Relations (Manila: Alip 
and Sons, Inc., 1959), p. 48. 


Alip, Philippine-Japanese Relations, pp. 45- 

46; and cf. Epistola, "Hong Kong Junta," pp. 33-38. 


Taylor, Philippine Insurrection , 3:30, 

extract from PIR, 2 6.6. 


Ibid., 2:53. 


Ibid., 3:82, extract from PIR, 674.1. 

Agoncillo, Malolos, pp. 222-23. 


Taylor, Ph^l^ppine Insurrection, 2:54. 

2 8 

Mabini, Philippine Revolution , p. 52. Mabini 

was first introduced to Aguinaldo on 12 June 1898. 


Taylor, Ph^l^pp^ne Insurrection, 3:135-41, 

extract from PIR, 2 06.3. 


PIR, 477.6. Agoncillo also wrote Mabini on 

22 July 1898, recommending representatives in certain 

foreign countries. An astute politician close to the 

leader, Mabini may also have influenced Aguinaldo to 

appoint foreign representatives, PIR, 451.1. 


Taylor, Philippine Insurrection, 3:189, 

extract from PIR, 3 9 9.1. 


Ibid., 3:189; a copy of the manifesto is 

found in 3:187. 



Ibid., 3:193, extract from PIE, Books C.l. 

Aguinaldo recommended to Agoncillo that he leave the 
Junta in the charge of Apacible, Sandico, Lukban, and 


Ibid., 3:196, extract from PIR, 5.7. 

Apparently Aguinaldo believed the Carolines and 
Marianas, also Spanish territory, a part of the 
Philippines . 

^^Ibid., 3:197, extract from PJi?, 432.2, 
France, Pedro P. Roxas and Juan Luna; England, Antonio 
Regidor and Sixto Lopez; United States, Filipe 
Agoncillo; Japan, Mariano Ponce and Faustino Lichauco; 
and Australia, Heriverto Zarcal . 

^^Ibid. , 3 :198. 

^"^Ibid., 3:322, extract from PIE, 3 8 5.5. 

^^Ibid., 3:J+11, extract from PIR, Books C.l. 

^^Ibid., 3:412. 


^PIR, 47 7.1. 

Taylor, Philippine Insurrection, 3:327-28, 
extract from PIR, Books C.l. 

■PIR, 457.5. 


Ibid., 1203.1; and Consular Despatches, 

Book 20, No. 13 3, Hong Kong, 1 June 18 9 5 to 3 April 


^^Taylor, Philippine Insurrection, 2:500; 
PIR, 431.8. 

PIE, mi .7 . Agoncillo to Aguinaldo, 
22 September 1899. 

^^Ibid. , 102.5. 

'^"'ibid. , 451.4. 

U 8 

Taylor, Philippine Insurrection , 3:500-501; 

PIE, 451.6, Agoncillo to Aguinaldo, Paris, 22 October 
1898; and cf. Agoncillo, Malotos, p. 323. 




Agumaldo and Pacis, A Second Look, pp. 85- 

Taylor, Philippine Insurrection, 2:500-501, 

extract from FIR, 4 51.4. 

^^PIR, 451.6. 


Taylor, Philippine Insurrection, 2:501, 

extract from PIE, 3 95.8, 4 91.6. 


Charles Olcott, The Life of William MoKinley, 

2 vols. (Boston: Houghton Mifflin, 1917), vol. 2, 
p. 109 et seq. 

^PIR, 426.3, 426.10. 

^^Ibid., 441.2. 

^''ibid. , 1116.3. 

c o 

U.S., Congress, Senate, Civil Government 
for the Philippine Islands, 57th Cong., 1st sess., 

3 June 1902, Congressional Record, vol. 35, pt . 6, 
p. 6217. 


Agoncillo, Malolos, pp. 362-68. 

Garel A. Grunder and William E. Livezey, The 
Philippines and the United States (Norman: University 
of Oklahoma Press, 1951), p. 45. There has been a 
great deal of study of ratification of this treaty. 
See also: Paolo E. Coletta., "Bryan, McKinley, and the 
Treaty of Paris," Pacific Historical Review 26 (1961): 
341-50; Foster Rhea Dulles, The Imperial Years (New 
York: Apollo, 19 56); Richard Hofstadter, "Manifest 
Destiny and the Philippines," America in Crisis, ed . 
Daniel Aaron (Hamden, Conn.: Shoe String Press, 1952); 
Christopher Lasch, "The Anti-Imperialists, the 
Philippines, and the Inequality of Man," Journal of 
Social History 24 (1958): 319-331; Ernest R. May, 
"American Imperialism: A Reinterpretation, " Perspec- 
tives in American History 1 (1967): 123-287; and 
Thomas McCormick, "Insular Imperialism and the Open 
Door: The China Market and the Spanish-American War," 
Pacific Historical Review 32 (1963): 155-170. 



U.S., Congress, Senate, Testimony of Sixto 

Lopez, 57th Cong., 1st sess., 3 June 1902, Congressicnal 

Record, vol. 35, pt . 6. 

R 9 

"Agoncillo in Montreal," Manila Times., 
2 5 March 1899. 


The failure of Filipino diplomacy to influence 
the Paris peace negotiations, the American decision to 
acquire the Philippines , and the increasing bitterness 
between Filipino insurgents and American volunteers 
shattered the Filipinos ' confidence regarding the 
intentions of the United States. The smoldering 
distrust of Americans flared into open hostility during 
the last quarter of 1898 and exploded into war by 
February, 18 99. 

Aware of Filipino feelings. President McKinley 
informed Major-General E. S. Otis, Commander of American 
forces in the Philippines, that the paramount aim of the 
military administration should be to win the respect, 
confidence, and affection of the inhabitants: "the 
mission of the United States is one of benevolent 
assimilation . . . ." But the bitter and distrustful 
Filipinos were not interested in "benevolent assimila- 
tion" ; they wanted to consolidate their revolutionary 
gains. Psychologically they were prepared for war; 
conciliatory measures short of independence would not 
satisfy them. The insurgents had recently tasted 


victory over the Spaniards, and they were now willing 
to test their strength against the Americans. Seem- 
ingly casual in military bearing, the Americans were 
regarded as poorer soldiers than the Spaniards. In 
practice, however, the struggle was not waged solely in 
the Philippines, nor only with bolos and rifles. 

While Agoncillo was in Washington, the Junta 
began an ambitious propaganda campaign. On November 6, 

1898, Apacible, the new head of the Junta, recommended 

■ • . 2 

bribxng correspondents of f orexgn news services . 

Propaganda committees were formed in Europe and wherever 

Filipinos gathered. In Paris, Agoncillo tried to use 

the local propaganda committee to attract and influence 

the Peace Commission, publishing an "Act of Adhesion" 

. . . 3 

directed to the Philippine government. In Spam, 

Filipino residents formed the Filipino Republican 
Committee of Madrid, which produced a propaganda paper, 
Fi-lipinas ante Europa . 

By the spring of 189 9, the propaganda campaign 
was well underway. The Manila Times., a hostile American 
newspaper, asked: "Will None Of My Gallant Knights Rid 
Me Of This Troublous Priest?" The paper was not speak- 
ing of the minions of the Catholic church. As it 
explained : 


Day after day we came across more cases of the 
remarkably false news that is being disseminated by 
Filipino agents all over the world, the Junta in 
Hong Kong being most notorious in this respect. It 
is scarcely conceivable that respectable news agen- 
cies would allow themselves to be influenced, or be 
indiscreet enough to be "taken in," by these polit- 
ical schemers. Nevertheless, telegrams are 
appearing in papers all over the world purporting 
to have been supplied by Reuters and the Associated 
Press which are nothing but a barefaced conglomera- 
tion of lies .... 5 

It would seem that the world's press did not verify its 

sources, or Apacible's scheme to bribe correspondents 

was succeeding. 

In some ways, the propaganda effort had adverse 
effects upon the Filipinos. Anxious to send encourage- 
ment and to impress foreign sympathizers with public 
support for the Filipino cause, agents reported meetings 
with anti-imperialists and sympathetic men of promi- 
nence. Every favorable word, whether hesitantly or 
reservedly given, was amplified until it became a 
conunitment or a promise. Often a pessimistic evaluation 
was ignored or converted to favor the Filipinos. 

In the Philippines circulars containing over- 
statements, sincere or not, were delivered to insurgent 
chiefs in isolated areas. The propaganda, taken out of ■ 
context and misinterpreted, produced a false sense of 
support, but one that was too transient to support a 
protracted struggle. 


An example of unrealistic reporting was the 
Junta's evaluation of the Democratic party in the United 
States. In early 1900, agents of the Junta claimed to 
have had an interview with William Jennings Bryan, the 
presidential candidate of the Democrats. They took 
this opportunity to invite Bryan to participate in a 
conference between Filipino agents and anti-imperial- 
ists, but Bryan refused lest he be called a traitor. 
In his stead he "sent a most trusted person, his right 
hand man, Dr. Gardner." The conference was summarized 
in a letter to Aguinaldo from I . de los Santos , a 
Filipino agent: first, Bryan would never cease to 
defend Filipino rights; second, Bryan's name could 
never be mentioned in any manifesto; and third, in 
behalf of Bryan, Gardner promised that, if elected 
president, Bryan would recognize Philippine indepen- 
dence. De los Santos proposed that Filipino agents 
take up residence in Washington "pending the outcome of 
the presidential contest, aiding propaganda, and enliv- 
ening it until November . . . ." Two thousand pounds 
sterling ($20,000) was also necessary "for the propa- 
ganda, for paying newspapers and for bribing senators — 

this last clause is very important but difficult." 


To the Filipinos , the agents ' reports repre- 
sented a solid assurance of support for the rebels. An 
objective evaluation would not have substantiated the 
second-hand promises of a politician who refused to let 
his name be used by his supposed allies. 

The agents assured the Junta that the Democratic 
party would come into power in the next election. 
McKinley, the enemy of the Filipinos, would be deposed 
and a president favorable to Philippine independence 
would take office. This message was spread through 
circulars calling themselves "extracts from our corre- 
spondence with America," "news from our foreign agents," 
or "news from America." A new and powerful party had 
supposedly arisen in America to demand Philippine 

The claims were embellished by the guerrilla 
chiefs, who told their men that anti-imperialists were 
hanging imperialists in the streets of America, and 

that the fight should continue against American sym- 

pathizers among the native populace. Even 

sophisticates such as F. Buencamino celebrated Bryan's 

support with banquets and toasts. However, when 

Bryan was defeated soundly and McKinley was reelected. 


irreparable damage was done to the morale of the 
insurgents . 

Not all propaganda generated by the Junta came 
from Filipino sources. W. H. Bray, an opportunistic 
Englishman, was particularly active. Aside from main- 
taining a steady correspondence with Aguinaldo and 
providing advice, Bray appeared in Hong Kong around 
September, 1898, and became the press representative of 
the Junta. 

When open warfare broke out, the character of 
Bray's press releases changed into aggressive propa- 
ganda, denouncing American military tactics and 
accusing the American forces of committing atrocities. 
These broadsides , which even exceeded the claims of 
Aguinaldo' 8 native correspondents, were of value to the 
insurgent cause in providing fuel for the anti-impe- 
rialists. Despite Bray's usefulness, which was 
partially based on the fact that his nationality lent 
credibility to his charges and claims, the Junta was 
wary of him. In a confidential letter to Aguinaldo in 
August, 1899, a member of the Junta stated, "Whatever 
we do he will never bring a law suit against us as we 

have documents in our hands which will injure him in 

pocket and reputation . . . ." 


In Hong Kong, Consul Wildman lost the trust of 
the Junta and his advice no longer affected its 
policies . The State Department censure and the course 
of events had finally convinced Bryan that his labor 
would be fruitless. By the time fighting broke out, 

Wildman was working against the Junta's efforts to 


procure arms . 

The insurgents' financial resources were being 
rapidly depleted with relatively little to show for 
their purchases. Repeatedly, agents of the Junta were 
forced to pay bribes--"squeeze"--to consummate their 
deals. By mid-December, 1898, the PUOO,000 acquired by 
Aguinaldo from the Spaniards had been released by the 
Hong Kong banks; what was left was guarded carefully. 

One of the Junta's most costly lessons resulted 
from an arms contract arranged through Spitzel Company, 
an American firm headquartered in Shanghai. G. 
Lichauco, an agent of the Junta, signed a purchase 
agreement written in English, which he could not read. 
The contract obligated the Junta to pay P170,000 for 
arms of which delivery in the Philippines was very 
uncertain. When the Junta delayed prepayment, the 
Spitzel Company threatened a lawsuit. Thereupon the 
Junta paid PlSOjOO.O and agreed to make no claim for 


the rifles. A full report was made to Aguinaldo in 
which the Junta staff explained that they were honor- 
bound to pay; a lawsuit would have exposed their 

operations and probably caused their expulsion from 

. . . . m 
Hong Kong by Brxtish authorities. These were weak 

excuses tendered by men who had little business 

experience or knowledge of law. Dealings in arms were 

as illegal for commercial firms in China as for 

Filipino exiles in Hong Kong. A contractor had little 

chance to win a lawsuit centering on an unlawful service 

never performed. Obviously the Junta's leaders did not 

consult the successful Filipino businessmen in Hong 

Kong, who undoubtedly would have recognized that the 

charges of the Spitzel Company were a paper threat. 

Correspondence between the Junta and Aguinaldo, 

even after the outbreak of hostilities, was replete 

with schemes to acquire arms. The Junta continually 

pleaded for funds, which the Filipino government was 

unable to provide. Apart from their own desperate 

financial needs, the insurgent leaders may have 

considered the Junta a poor risk for expending their 

meager assets. Instructions were occasionally issued 

concerning the covert landing of arms, but it is 

unknown whether these arms were procured through the 


Junta after hostilities began. It is a fact, however, 
that arms were obtained by the insurgents. Spanisli 
of f icers--prisoners of the insurgents in a position to 
know — estimated that Aguinaldo had obtained 56,000 
rifles from Spain by various means. 

The other agents of the Junta appointed by 
Aguinaldo in August, 1898 did not fare any better than 
Agoncillo. In France, Roxas seems to have accomplished 
nothing. Ponce and Lichauco continued to intrigue in 
Japan but won no tangible support. Regidor, the 
representative in London , kept up correspondence with 
the Hong Kong Junta , giving advice and submitting 
various plans for fighting the Americans , but he con- 
tributed nothing tangible. Sixto Lopez joined Regidor 
when Agoncillo left Canada for Europe. 

There is evidence that Lopez had his own ideas 
concerning the diplomatic representation of the 
Philippines, and that he was a source of discord among 
his fellow agents. On June 8, 1899, Agoncillo wrote 
that he did not see why Regidor insisted on having 

Lopez sent to Washington as Aguinaldo 's representative. 

He himself would not have Lopez for a secretary. On 

June 22, Lopez suggested himself as a representative to 

Washington with full powers of negotiation, including 


the right to sell property and borrow money in the name 
of the Filipino government. It was his belief that the 
time was right to re-negotiate for peace and indepen- 
dence, and that he could easily accomplish the task. 
He also desired authority to sell Filipino concessions 
to wealthy Englishmen, the money to be used to support 
the Filipino cause. Probably respecting the advice of 

his other agents abroad, Aguinaldo never granted such 

powers TO Lopez. 

While in America, Lopez wrote a circular 

addressed to the American people and distributed from 

Boston. It consisted of reprints of letters pleading 

for recognition of and support for the Filipino people. 

Many of his statements contained promises he had no 

authority to give--an assumption of power that prompts 

one to question his understanding of his position 

within the revolutionary hierarchy and his overall 

grasp of the situation. The end of 1900 found Lopez in 

Hong Kong, where he tried to secure passage to the 

Philippines. Apparently having lost credibility with 

his fellow agents , he was returning to the Philippines 

to re-establish his position. When he refused to take 

the required oath of allegiance to the United States, 


permission to enter the Philippines was denied by the 

American authorities. 

During 1899 and 1900, the Junta received many 

letters from Americans favoring Filipino independence. 

The missives asked for information, tendered advice, 

and proffered congratulations. In March, 1899, the 

Junta received a letter from the secretary of the 

Single Tax League of Ohio, containing a resolution 

drawn up by the Cincinnati branch, which denounced the 

"unjust war waged by the Government of the United 

States upon the Filipino patriots . . . . " The members 

of the club. Democrats and Republicans alike, were 

convinced that the war in the Philippines was 

being carried on without any pretense of consulting 
the will of the American people upon the m.atter, 
and at the dictates of the plutocracy which rules 
the government .... 

The letter closed by "wishing to General Aguinaldo and 

his patriot army the greatest success against our army 

of subjugation, tyranny, and oppression." Such 

letters encouraged the Filipino leaders and probably 

prolonged the war, just as the activities of some 

Americans in the early 197 0s may have lengthened the 

Vietnam conflict. The Filipinos did not seem to 

recognize that groups such as the Single Tax League of 


Ohio were small, powerless, and viewed as hopelessly 
impractical by most Americans at the time. 

As their rebellion progressed, the Filipinos 
learned of other information which, although discour- 
aging, served to strengthen their resolve. Dr. 
Ferdinand Blumentritt, an expert on the Philippines, 
wrote in June, 1899 that, in his opinion, only two 
conditions would be acceptable to the Filipinos--inde- 
pendence or an American protectorate. What had 
happened in Texas and California would be inevitable if 
America took possession — the nativps would become work- 
men and employees on the estates they had owned. 
Blumentritt predicted: 

That proud scorn which characterizes the Yankee in 
his political and social contact with colored people 
. , . will close their ears to the complaints and 
aspirations of the sons of the country and will 
laugh at those who helped to bring the country 
under the American yoke. 21 

There was every reason for the Filipinos to believe 

this grim prediction. 

Hong Kong was the dissemination point for 

Aguinaldo's dispatches, which were smuggled out of the 

Philippines. Communication between Aguinaldo and the 

Junta became increasingly difficult, however. It is 

evident that this physical and administrative isolation 


fostered a divergence of ideas and policy within the 
Junta. Continuous internal rivalries and personal 
intrigues wasted much energy. 

The superior military forces of the United 
States had destroyed organized Filipino resistance by 
November, 1898, and Aguinaldo began a forced odyssey 
that would only end with his capture. By the spring of 
1900, the American forces were still keeping Aguinaldo 
on the move. The Junta complained that from November, 
1899 until May, 1900, only one letter was received from 
the insurgent leader. During this period Aguinaldo ' s 
communications with his subordinate commanders also 
broke down. Isolated by terrain and fighting a war 
that V7as becoming increasingly unconventional, the 
chiefs tended increasingly to establish themselves as 
supreme within their territories. 

To survive and to continue the struggle, the 
Filipinos had to adopt guerrilla warfare. Aguinaldo 
advocated this form of warfare despite the opposition 
of some of his top commanders. Unavoidably, warfare 
fractionalized the revolutionary government. A real 
danger was the easy progression from guerrilla warfare 
to banditry, a danger which the more astute Filipino 
leaders comprehended. On May 1, 1900, the Junta wrote 


to Aguinaldo, warning him that the United States might 
declare an end to the war in the Philippines, and put 
into effect the "law of bandits"; that is, might cease 
to recognize prisoners of war, only the existence of 
robbers and brigands. Although this might well mean the 

destruction of the insurrection, the situation was now 


beyond Aguinaldo 's control. 

The Junta could only send encouragement to the 
scattered Filipino forces, and plead with them to con- 
tinue the struggle. This was done in the name of a dis- 
integrating government. To its correspondents abroad, 
the Junta spoke for a government that, to all intents, 
had ceased to exist. Since the deterioration was less 
evident to those further removed, Filipinos abroad con- 
tinued to promote revolution at home; throughout 190 0, 
they urged their countrymen to resist. Their letters 
were filled with assertions of growing support for the 
Filipino cause and personal assurances that they would 
soon be in the Philippines to fight and die beside their 
brothers. Few, if any, ever did return. Many requested 
money to promote the Filipino cause in foreign countries. 

One can only conclude that most of the exiles 
had no desire to exchange the safety and luxury of 
Europe for the fighting and the sacrificing which they 


so glibly urged upon their countrymen. Their words, 
however, tempoi-arily sustained and buoyed the morale of 
many Filipinos. 

The propaganda campaign reached new intensity 
by the end of summer, 1900. The acting head of the 
Junta i Riego de Dios , who had replaced Apacible while 
the latter made a trip to America in April, requested 
more information, especially concerning atrocities 
cominitted by American soldiers. The insurgents in the 
Philippines tried to supply the information, but by 
this time it was difficult tn get information out of 

the country and, when they did, their accuracy was 

questionable and their documentation inadequate. 

On November 10, 1900, the Junta was obliged to 
announce the demoralizing news of McKinley ' s re- 
election. Pleas to continue fighting, because the 
United States v/ould tire of the conflict, were now 
unenthusiastically received by the weary insurgents. 
Their hopes had been based on Bryan. The war was going 
badly, and there was little prospect of a change. The 
Junta and its correspondents continued to- send pathetic 
summaries of House and Senatorial allusions to support 
of the Filipinos. Translated into Spanish, these 
materials were distributed in the Philippines. The 


Junta had lost touch with the revolutionary movement, 
for the rebels at home were living from day to day, 
constantly on the move and continually harassed by 
pursuing enemy forces . Even if they could have under- 
stood the intricacies of American politics, they were 
hardly in a position to care about the debates of 
politicians half a world away. 

The Filipino populace had their own reasons for 
ignoring the pleas of the Junta, Reforms and increas- 
ing stability had followed the American occupation. 
Although imperfect, the situation in the Philippines 
was promising. On June 21, 1900, General Arthur 
MacArthur, who had taken command from General Otis as 
military governor of the Philippines, issued a decree 

of amnesty to all insurgents surrendering and taking 

an oath of allegiance. This was one of the first 

steps to end the war. On July 2, MacArthur issued a 

proclamation granting individual rights to Filipinos. 

Peaceable assemblies and festivals began to be held in 

and around Manila, the former bastion of insurgent 

resistance. Earlier, the Schurman Commission, the 

first of two teams sent out by Congress to investigate 

the situation, recommended that military government be 

replaced by civilian rule. The second team, under 


Taft, began to formulate a specific colonial policy for 
the islands. The desire to conciliate the Filipinos 

was an overriding--altliough unwritten — goal of this 


America's attitude was not lost upon the 

Filipinos. The guerrillas started to lose urban 

support, and an increasing number of disillusioned and 

exhausted rebels began surrendering. Many of the 

Wealthy and timorous intellectuals, who had never 

accepted the fact that their leader was not of their 

class, and who feared the emergence of "have nots," 

found it easy to abandon what nov; appeared to be a 

9 c 
hopeless struggle. They defected to the Americans. 

On March 23, 1901, Aguinaldo was captured in 

the hills of Palanan, and on April 1, he took the oath 

of allegiance to the United States. The Junta 

addressed a circular on April 8, to all Filipino 

commanders in the field informing them of Aguinaldo 's 

capture and of the surrender of other leaders . Even 

after the disintegration of his government and the 

scattering of his forces, Aguinaldo had remained the 

symbol of independence and resistance. His capture was 

the final demoralizing blow to most of the guerrillas 

in the field. 


Perhaps significantly, Aguinaldo's capture was 
initiated when a small group of insurgents surrendered 
to Lieutenant D. Taylor of the 24th U. S. Infantry. In 
their possession were several letters from Aguinaldo 
addressed to Filipino leaders. One of the captured 
Filipinos, Cecilio Segismundo, revealed Aguinaldo's 
hideout. Brigadier General Fredrick Funston, Commander 
of the 24th Infantry, formulated a bold plan, utilizing 
Lazaro Segovia, a Spaniard who had also been an insur- 
gent. That former rebels helped to capture Aguinaldo 
is indicative of the deterioration of morale, and of 

the willing acceptance of their fate at the hands of 


the Americans. 

The Hong Kong Junta did not expire at once, but 
survived in a moribund state until July 31, 1903, when 
it was officially dissolved. Some members began to 
filter back to the Philippines, while others, conspic- 
uous in their pride, chose to remain in exile. One 
individual, Artemio Ricarte , attempted to rekindle the 
revolutionary flame. 

Ricarte was a general in the insurgent army. 
Arrested in July, 1900, he was deported with Mabini to 
Guam in January, 1901. Ricarte was repatriated in 
February, 190 3, aboard the U. S. Army transport Thomas. 


When he refused to take the oath of allegiance to the 
United States, he was not allowed to land in the 
Philippines, and the Thomas continued on to Hong Kong. 

There he associated with the members of the revolu- 

2 8 
tionary committee. Although no organized Junta then 

existed, these men eventually formed the Katipunan 

Abuluyan , a society based upon the old Katipunan . 

Ricarte was elected president. 

In May, 190 3, a stranger named Manuel Ruiz 
"Prin" arrived in Hong Kong from Manila, claiming 
authority granted by the Filipino people to treat with 
foreign powers on independence. Bearing documents and 
lists of individuals professing loyalty to the cause, 
he proselytized among the Filipinos of the crown 
colony. Ricarte, one of his initial recruits, intro- 
duced him to others and vouched for his sincerity. 

Ricarte and Ruiz discovered that they lived for 
a common goal--"to return to the Philippines to revolu- 
tionize the country or die in the woods if the country 


did not respond . . . ." In December, 1903, they 

formed a committee or Junta called the Universal 
Republic of Philippine Dem.ocracy. 

Hidden in the hold of the S. S. Yuensang ^ a 
Chinese freighter, Ricarte returned to the Philippines 


in December, 1903, successfully avoided the authorities, 
and made contact v/ith former insurgents, whom he tried 
to recruit. Again and again he was counseled to return 
to Hong Kong or to submit to the American authorities. 
He was told that "the independence of the country would 
be accomplished in three or four years since Taft had 

set up the doctrine of 'the Philippines for the 

Filipinos . . . .'" His former comrades in arms 

tried to convince him of the futility of restarting the 

revolution, with unavoidable bloodshed, especially when 

independence was only a few years away. Traveling from 

friend to friend, he received essentially the same 

answer to his pleas, but he continued to try. 

During this time, the Secret Service bureaus of 

the Constabulary and City of Manila were hunting 

Ricarte. The authorities had knovm Ruiz's and Ricarte's 

intentions even in Hong Kong, where they had been 

watched carefully. Members of the Junta had been 

warned by Apacible, who received word from Manila, that 

Ruiz was well known in that city as an irresponsible 

individual of anarchistic tendencies . Filipinos kept 

the American consulate apprised of what these men were 



Ricarte ' s efforts to raise an army proved 
futile, except in the province of Ilocos Sur, where he 
attracted a few constabulary soldiers. On April 29, 
1904, he was arrested at a cockpit, tried, and sentenced 
to six years' imprisonment. He was banished from the 

islands in 1910 after again refusing the oath of 

allegxance. He returned to Hong Kong. This vain 

effort to revive the revolution played out the sequel 

to the story of the Junta. 



McKinley to Otis, 21 December 1898, in U.S. 
Adjutant-General's Office, Correspondence Relating to 
the War with Spain from April 15^ 1898 to July 20, 
1902, 2 vols. (Washington, D.C.: Government Printing 
Office, 1902), 2:719. 


Taylor, Philippine Insurrection, 2:492, 

extract from PIR, 4 31.5, 


Ibid., 4:328, extract from John R. Thomas, 

Jr. J Collection Relating to the Insurrectionist 
Government of the Philippines, 1898-1899, Manuscripts 
Division, Library of Congress, Washington, D.C., 
folder 6; and Agoncillo, Malolos , p. 319. 

Taylor, Philippine Insurrection, 4:328, 
folders 5 and 6 . 


Manila Times, 8 April 1899. 


Worcester, Philippines Past and Present, 
pp. 248-52. 

Taylor, Philippine Insurrection , 2:506, 

extract from PIR , 515.6. PIR, 567.1 claims that 

twenty-one senators had been bought. See also 

Worcester, Philippines Past and Present , chap. 10 

et seq. ; and Cameron Forbes, Philippine Islands, 

2 vols. (Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 

1945), 1:61. Since no mention of a Dr. Gardner appears 

in the biographies of Bryan, there is some doubt as to 

his position on Bryan's staff, and to de los Santos' 

reference to him. 

Taylor, Philippine Insurrection, 2:512-13. 


-^^PIR, 970.7, 1134.1, 17.9. 

Taylor, Philippine Insurrection, 2:498, 
extract from PIR, 4 4 5.2. 


■'■^Ibid., 2:499; and PIH, 396.8, 

Taylor, Philippine Insurrection, 2:493. 
The activities of Lt . Col. John S. Mallory, U.S.A.. 
the military attache at Peking, may have also con- 
tributed to Wildman's reversal of behavior. See PIR, 


Taylor, Philippine Insurrection, 2:495, 

extract from PIE, 54.5. 


Ibid., 2:495. According to the Manila Times 

(25 August 1899): "There is money in running a Junta, 

but when others claim the money then the Junta is on 

the run." Cf . Agoncillo, Malolos, p. 318. Many of 

the Junta's more sophisticated leaders had returned 

to the Philippines with Aguinaldo, or had been appointed 

agents to foreign countries. 

Taylor, Philippine In.<^urrection, 2:496, 
extract from PIE, 4 4 5.2. 


Ibid., 2:505, extract from PIE, 443.1. 

■"■^Ibid. , 2:505. 


Ibid., 2:506, extracts from the circular 

"Sixto Lopez to the American People" (1900). 

20 ... 

PIE, 391.3; and A. Mabini to Isidor de 

Santos, 2 July 1899, in Apolinario Mabini, The 

Letters of Apolinario Mabini (Manila: National Heroes 

Commission, 1955), p. 189. 

"""PJi?, 44 6.0. 


Taylor, Philippine Insurrection, 2:516, 

extract from PIE, 516.5. 

^^Ibid., 2:517. 


U.S., Congress, Senate, Hearings on Affairs 

in Philippine Islands , pt . 2, p. 1923. 



Salamanca, Filipino Reaction to American 

Rule , p . 3 8. 

2 fi 

Agoncillo, Malolos, p. 563, See also 

Forbes, Philippine Islands , 1:90; and Onofre Corpuz , 
The Philippines (Englewood Cliffs, N.J,: Prentice- 
Hall, 1965), pp. 65-71. 


Lazaro Segovia, The Full Story of 

Aguinaldo ' s Capture (Manila: MCS Enterprises, 1969). 

2 8 

The committee was then composed of G, 

Apacible, C, Lukban , M, Ponce, V. Ilustre, and E. R. 
de Dios , former agents and correspondents for the 
Junta who had returned to Hong Kong at the end of the 

29 . 

Ricarte, Memoirs of General Rtcarte , pp. 115, 

124, extracted from Appendix No. 164 in the Watson 

Collection, police record of Artemio Ricarte, and 

Appendix No. 17 3, Watson Collection, stenographic 

report of an interrogation put to Artemio Ricarte by 

the Philippine Constabulary and the City Secret 

Ser-vice of Manila. 

^°Ibid. , p. 125. 

^■"■Ibid., p. 188. 



In 1859, Sir John Bowring, the governor of Hong 

Kong and a recognized expert on the Far East, predicted 

after a tour of the Philippines : 

There is no reason to apprehend that these 
millions will aspire to political power or 
sovereignty [or ever] . . . unite in a 
national objective or recognize one native 
chief. 1 

Less than fifty years later, Bowring 's prophecy 
was disproved. The Filipino millions aspired to 
political power, the masses united with a common objec- 
tive, and they recognized one leader. But the greatest 
irony in Bowring 's forecast is that the Philippine 
Revolution presaged a movement that would one day sweep 
all of Southeast Asia. The dream harbored by a small 
group of exiles in Hong Kong proved to be a force 
infinitely greater than themselves. 

This study has described that Junta with the 
purpose of assessing its effect upon Philippine indepen- 
dence. Of course, certain events outside of Hong Kong-- 
such as Filipino activity in Europe, the United States, 
and the Philippines--bear upon this subject, and are 
therefore examined too. 


In January, 18 98, there •v^;as no defined goal 
toward which the Junta could work. The exiles were 
skeptical of the Spaniards' good faith; while psycholog- 
ically prepared to renew the rebellion, for the moment 
they had to be content with waiting and watching. 
Aguinaldo, obsessed by his dream of independence, could 
not openly advocate this goal so soon after the conclu- 
sion of the pact of Biak-na-Bato, but he prepared for 
the opportunity. 

The Spaniards were mistaken in their assessment 
of the situation; their post-pact attitude reflected 
pre-insurrection policies. They believed that, with 
the voluntary expatriation of the insurgent leaders, 
peace would be restored. Only the granting of reforms 
could have satisfied the Filipinos. Bad faith was 
exhibited by both sides. VJhile Aguinaldo seems to have 
expected from the beginning to use the indemnity for 
the purchase of arms, the Spaniards never intended to 
grant reforms. 

The obdurate attitude of the Spaniards towards 
reform, and their departure from the agreed-upon 
distribution of the indemnity, was all the provocation 
the sensitive and anxious exiles needed. They began to 
foment revolution with reform as their immediate 


objective. For most of the members of the Junta and 
certainly for the Filipino masses, independence was a 
concept whose foundation was not firmly laid. More 
than three centuries of Spanish rule lay heavy upon the 
people. The idea of independence originated with the 
Katipunan. It was cherished by Aguinaldo who caused 
it to germinate within the Junta and encouraged the 
members to adopt it as their goal. Through the efforts 
of the exiles , this goal was replanted in the fertile 
environment of the Philippines. 

In instituting revolt, the Junta was conspic- 
uously successful; it organized the people and 
eventually, with the Americans, defeated the Spaniards. 
Turning against the Americans, the Junta continued to 
espouse revolution, until it lost its base of power-- 
the support of the people. 

How did the formation of the Junta facilitate 
its purpose? The treaty of Biak-na-Bato provided the 
Filipino leadership with an advantageous way out of an 
indefensible position. The insurgents were at the end 
of their resources, and would soon be compelled to 
surrender for lack of arms. This fact was unknown to 
the Spaniards, for whom the conflict had become expen- 
sive. The Spanish settled for what they considered a 


cheap compromise but one which in the end proved dear to 
them. Aguinaldo and his companions left the Philippines 
as heroes, with their pride intact, their honor unques- 
tioned, and their pockets filled with Spanish gold. The 
simultaneous deportation of the revolutionary intellect 
to a common place of exile did not eliminate the core of 
the insurrectionist movement but merely relocated its 
leadership in Hong Kong. 

The banishment of the revolutionary chiefs 
provided a respite that enabled them to regroup. They 
remained intact and organized, their strengths combining 
to increase the revolutionary spirit of the whole. 
Aguinaldo, the strongest personality in the group, 
carried with him to Hong Kong the respect and authority 
he had earned on the battlefield. This esteem was 
strengthened by the spartan existence he demanded of 
himself and others. 

Hong Kong provided several advantages. Of all 
the possible places of exile, it was the closest — 
approximately two and one half days by steamer from 
Manila. It was an international city and major commer- 
cial port, an ideal location from which to acquire and 
ship arms to the Philippines. As a cosmopolitan center, 
it brought the Filipinos into contact with 


representatives of foreign powers. Governed by the 
British, the Crown Colony afforded freedom of operation 
that was not possible under the oppressive Spanish 
administration of the Philippines. Old Filipino sym- 
pathizers--expatriates from the 1870s--were prospering 
in the city. They provided contacts and financial help 
to the newly arrived exiles. 

There were also disadvantages with which the 
exiles had to cope. Their visibility was relatively 
high, for they were foreigners who did not speak the 
local language, they were confined to a geographically 
small area, and they were unfamiliar with the colony's 
laws. These factors made it easy for Spanish agents to 
observe them, despite their clandestine and conspir- 
atorial activity. 

Perhaps the most debilitating feature of the 
exiles' existence was their lack of personal contact 
with the Filipino masses. A cleavage began upon their 
arrival and increased until the Juyita had lost psy- 
chological touch with the people by 1901. The physical 
isolation of the Junta from the Philippines was accen- 
tuated first by the action of the British authorities 
and then of the American military. 


The leadership of the Junta resided in 
Aguinaldo. Fie was the embodiment of the revolutionary 
spirit and, with a singleness of purpose, he directed 
the Junta^ s energy towards independence. Despite 
allegations of greedy and traitorous intentions, there 
can be no doubt that Aguinaldo succeeded in preserving 
the Spanish indemnity, securing American aid, and 
maintaining the revolutionary integrity of the Junta. 
Conversely, the Junta was his support, and individual 
members were his conf idantes--men such as Filipe 
Agoncillo, Teodoro Sandico , J. M. Leyba , and Gregorio 
del Pilar. While they did not possess the charismatic 
qualities of Aguinaldo, they had keen minds and an 
understanding of the world which enabled them to cloak 
Aguinaldo 's rustic background with their sophistication, 
Their support never wavered, for they recognized in 
Aguinaldo that quality of leadership and spark of 
greatness necessary to any revolutionary movement. His 
faltering or insecurity was observed only by his 
closest companions. They buoyed their leader's spirit, 
helped him formulate his strategy, and advised and 
guided him through the maze of diplomacy. They were 
the pillars; he, the foundation. 


Aguinaldo's methods, adopted and enlarged upon 
by the Junta ^ were crafty, complex, and brilliant, 
involving a spectrum of talents — espionage, diplomacy, 
propaganda, murder, bribery, deceit, and forgery. 
Justified by the avowed goal of independence for the 
Philippines, he saw no tactic as amoral. 

Aguinaldo kept tight rein on the Junta and 
utilized control over its funds , as well as personal 
magnetism, to bind the members to him. He overcame 
distractions to individuals generated by isolation and 
fed by greed, pride and lust for power. 

While the actions of the Spaniards generated a 
purpose for the Junta, the goal of independence, kept 
alive within Aguinaldo, seemed to become realistic as a 
result of the impressions received through consuls 
Pratt and V/ildman. No doubt Aguinaldo was initially 
convinced that America's interest in the Philippines 
was motivated by humanitarian considerations. His 
obsession with independence encouraged him to accept 
Pratt's vague promises, and he transferred his personal 
goal to the Junta, imbuing its members with a greater 
sense of direction. 

The goal of independence was readily accepted 
by the inner circle--those closest to Aguinaldo--but it 


gave rise to suspicion of the United States when 
American representatives began to equivocate. The 
Junta advised caution in dealing with the Americans and 
prepared for a change in United States policy, but the 
idea of independence as the ultimate goal remained 
rooted strongly. 

Prior to Aguinaldo ' s return to Manila, the 
Junta members acted with concerted and unselfish zeal, 
and remarkable efficiency. They cultivated the support 
of the wealthy Filipinos in Hong Kong, overcoming 
social disparities .and avoiding basic political 
differences. They managed their finances and maintained 
a low political profile to avoid antagonizing the 
British authorities. By repudiating and replacing the 
officials of the provisional government with members of 
the Junta., de jure rather then de facto status was 
achieved. Contact v;as established with foreign powers. 
The Junta accurately assessed the intentions of the 
Americans, utilizing the influence of the American 
consuls and the resources of the Unites States Navy, 
while avoiding disclosure of their true desires. 
Circulars were distributed, designed to prepare the 
homeland for Aguinaldo 's return and the renewal of the 
insurrection. The Junta boldly played both sides, 


simultaneously negotiating with the Spaniards and 
Americans. Errors were made, but the Junta took advan- 
tage of every opportunity to further the revolutionary 
cause, rose above internal problems, and maintained a 
united front. This was a most productive period for 
the Junta. 

With Aguinaldo's departure on May 17, 1898, the 
Junta was divested of vitality. The men left behind in 
Hong Kong, although generally capable and dedicated, 
lacked greatness and were wracked by internal rivalries, 
personal greed, and occasional stupidity. Of all the 
exiles, Agoncillo was perhaps the most able, but his 
rivalry with Sandico detracted from the Junta^s purpose 
and threatened its existence. A rift between the 
"inner" and "outer" circles sapped the strength of the 
organization. Several efforts to procure arms were 
mishandled, drained the finances, and raised questions 
of reliability. Incurring the ire of the local author- 
ities, the Junta did attain a degree of success in its 
efforts to procure arms at a time when they were des- 
perately needed by Aguinaldo, but ineptness was the 

With the assignment of its most capable men as 
agents to foreign countries, and Sandico 's return to 


the Philippines, the Junta^ s role became measurably 
less. Although in some instances their efforts were 
extraordinary, the agents of the Junta were essentially 
unsuccessful in their main attempts to gain recognition. 
Aguinaldo therefore conceived new missions for the 
Junta: propaganda and intelligence. 

Serving as a clearing house for information, 
the Junta relayed messages to and from the Philippines, 
but not until the declaration of war did the organiza- 
tion again become productive. War determined the 
course of events; no longer was it necessary to hedge 
the propaganda in hopes of recognition. 

Shrewdly using Bray's talents, the Junta 
achieved notoriety as a propaganda machine. Reports 
were often fabricated or exaggerated, but they solic- 
ited response. Reports to the Philippines, often 
edited to reflect support for the cause of the 
Filipinos, projected a feeling of hope--although of 
short duration--to the hard-pressed insurgents. 

The credibility of the Junta bagan to be ques- 
tioned after the American elections of 1900. In the 
face of Bryan's defeat, the Junta^ s continued claim of 
foreign support for the insurgent cause rang hollow. 
The realities of the war were to be found in the 


Philippines; out of communication with Aguinaldo and 
losing contact with the populace, the Junta began to 
slip into a state of fantasy and impracticality . 

This condition existed more acutely among the 
agents abroad , most of whom were appointed from the 
Junta. Like Sixto Lopez, they exhibited a tendency 
towards grandiose and unrealistic schemes, for they 
were out of touch with the homeland and relied upon the 
Junta for information and direction. Some, comfortable 
in their sanctuaries, urged their countrymen to fight 
"to the end, while adding insincere promises to return 
to the Philippines to die beside their brothers. 

Aguinaldo 's capture heralded not only the end 
of the revolution, but also the death of the Junta- He 
symbolized the movement , and his oath of allegiance to 
the United States signified his acceptance of the 
inevitable. Ricarte's attempt to resurrect the Junta 
was but a final tremor, for the organization was dead. 

The Junta must be recognized as the vehicle 
which sustained the revolutionary movement, keeping it 
alive by finding external support. Aguinaldo 's leader- 
ship was essential to the Junta ' s development and 
existence, for he established its purpose and directed 
it towards the goal of independence. Although this 


objective was not realized, the Junta was instrumental 
in making it a national aspiration. The impetus 
generated by this band of men changed the course of 
Filipino history, bound its fate to that of the United 
States, and fused nationalism with independence. 



Sir John Bowring, A Visit to the Philippine 
Islands (London: Smith and Elder, 1859), p. 98. 



Primary Sources 

Official Documents 

Aguinaldo, Emilio. Resena Veridica de la Revolucion 

Filipinaj Reimpresa por orden del Sr. Guevara^ Jefe 
Superior Militar Interior. Nueva Caceras , 1899. 
English translation printed in Congressional 
Record, vol. 35, pt . 6, app . , pp. 440-45. 

Propagandistic account of the Filipino-American 
conflict, stressing Aguinaldo 's dealings with 
Pratt, Wildman, and Dewey. 

Graff, Henery P., ed . American Imperialism and the 
Philippine Insurrection. Boston: Little, Brown 
and Co'. , 196 9. 

Selected testimony is drawn from the three 
volumes of S. Doc. 3 31. 

Mallory, John S., Major, U.S. Army. "The Philippine 
Insurrection 1896-18 98," in U.S., Department of 
War, Report of Major-General G. W. Davis, Command- 
ing the Division of the Philippines (1903), 
vol . 3 , app . 8 . 

Compiled primarily from Spanish sources, this 
account is considered the most balanced treatment 
of the insurrection available in English. 

Richards, Julian W. , comp . A Handbook of the Spanish- 
American War of 1898 and the Insurrection in the 
Philippines . Cedar Rapids, Michigan: The Republican 
Printing Co. , 1899. 

Selected official reports and documents from 
the Philippine insurrection. 

U.S. Adjutant-General's Office. Correspondence 
Relating to the War With Spain, From April 15, 
1898 to July SO, 1902. 2 vols. Washington, D.C: 
Government Printing Office, 1902. 


• Congress. House. Annual Reports of the War 

Department, 1899. Report of Major-General E. S. 
Otis on Military Operations and Civil Affairs. 
56th Cong., 1st sess., 1899. Washington, D.C.: 
Government Printing Office. 

Contains letters and reports dealing with the 
situation in the Philippines in 1898-1899, by the 
military governor. 

• Congress. Senate. Admiral Dewey's Report 

of April IZ, 1898. S. Doc. 73, 55th Cong., 1st 
sess., 4 December 1899-7 June 1900. 

Dewey's record of his dealings with the 
Filipinos in Hong Kong and the events leading up 
to the Battle of Manila Bay. 

Congress. Senate. Communications Between 

the Executive Department of the Government and 
Aguinaldo, Etc. S. Doc. 208, 56th Cong., 1st 
sess., pt. 2, 4 December 1899-7 June 1900. 

Includes Artacho's request -for money from 
Primo de Rivera, and other translations of in- 
surgent documents and manuscripts. 

. Congress. Senate. Consular Revorts on 

Philippine Affairs. S. Doc. 62, 55th Cong., 3d 
sess., 5 December 1898-3 March 1899. 

Contains Wildman's reports to the State 
Department and other important documents relating 
to the peace treaty between the United States and 

Congress. Senate. Debate on Civil Govern- 

ment for the Philippine Islands. 57th Cong., 
1st sess., 1902. Congressional Record, vol, 35, 
pt. 6. 

The transcript incorporates numerous translated 
documents and letters dealing with the Philippine 

. Congress. Senate. Hearings on Affairs in 

Philippine Islands. S. Doc. 331, 57th Cong., 
1st sess., pts. 1-3, 2 December 1901-1 July 1902. 

Among the valuable data will be found testimony 
of Taf t , Dewey, Otis, and MacArthur. 


Congress. Senate. Letters and Documents 

Presented by Senator Hoar in a Speech on the 
Philippine Islands. 56th Cong., 1st sess., 
U December 1899-7 June 1900. Congressional Record, 
vol. 33, pt. 5. 

Translations of documents. 

Congress. Senate. Testimonies and Letters 

Regarding the Conduct of War in the Philippines . 

S. Doc. 221, 56th Cong., 1st sess., pts. 1-3, 
H December 1899-7 June 1900. 

Department of State. Consular Despatches, 

Hong Kong, 1844-1906. Despatches, 3 June 1895- 
26 April 1899. (Microcopy no. M108, roll 19.) 
Washington, D.C.: National Archives, Microfilm 
Publications . 

Contains reports and letters of Consul Wildman 
to the State Department. 

Department cf State , .Consular Despatches, 

Manila, 1817-1899. Vols. 12 and 13, 3 January 
1894-26 August 1899. (Microcopy no. T43, rolls 
11 and 12.) Washington, D.C.: National Archives, 
Microfilm Publications. 

Of particular value are the reports and 
letters from Consul Williams to the State Depart- 
ment • 

War Department. Bureau of Insular Affairs, 

Compilation of Philippine Insurgent Records by 
John R. M. Taylor. Washington, D.C.: Government 
Printing Office, 1903. 

Aguinaldo's telegraphic correspondence 
(15 July 1898-28 February 1899) illustrates the 
leader's reliance upon the advice of men around 
him, and reveals the existence of opposition to 
his government. 

War Department. Philippine Division. 

Philippine Insurgent Records 18 96-1901 With Associ- 
ated Records of the United States War Department 
1900-1906. (Microcopy no. M254.) 

Over 400,000 documents of Aguinaldo's govern- 
ment were captured by U.S. forces, partially cata- 
logued by Captain J. R. M. Taylor, and eventually 
returned to the Philippines in 1958. 


Blair, Emma Helen, and Robertson, James Alexander, 
comps. The Philippine Islands: 1492-2898 . 
55 vols. Cleveland, Ohio: The Arthur H. Clark 
Co. , 1909. 

A monumental work consisting of translations 
from Spanish manuscripts, such as the writings of 
Spanish clergy and government officials. 

Fores-Ganzon, Guadalupe, trans. La Solidaridad, 
vol. 1, 1889. Quezon City: University of the 
Philippines, 1967. 

A major contribution to an appreciation of the 
reform movement, this English translation of a 
semi-monthly paper reveals pre-revolutionary con- 
ditions and expresses the aspirations of the 
illustrados . 

Mabini, Apolinario. The Letters of Apolinario Mabini. 
Manila: National Heroes ComT!:' ssion, 1965. 

A personal view of a patriot, revealing his 
struggles with other revolutionary personalities, 
and tracing the demise of the revolutionary govern- 

Taylor, John R. M. , comp. The Philippine Insurrection 
Against the United States. 5 vols. Pasay City, 
Philippines: Eugenic Lopez Foundation, 1971. 
Captain Taylor was detailed to compile a 
history from captured insurgent records. Completed 
in 1906, his work remained unpublished until 1971. 
While reflecting American bias, the history 
includes extensive translations from documents and 
manuscripts . 

Secondary Sources 


Aguinaldo, Emilio, and Pacis , Vicente. A Second Look 
at America. New York: Robert Speller and Sons, 

An account written long after the revolution 
took place. Although given to vagueness and con- 
tradiction, the author was a principal in the 
subject of this study, clearly expresses his views 


Dewey, George. Autobiography of George Devey : Admiral 
of the Navy. Mew York: Charles Scribner's Sons, 

The admiral's account of events in Asia in 18 98 
was of great value. 

Mabini, Apolinario. The Philippine Revolution. 

Department of Education, Republic of the Philip- 
pines: National Historical Commission, 1969. 

Memoirs covering the revolution; a personal 
translation of Mabini ' s La Revolucion Filipina. 
From the vantage point of a participant, the 
author evaluates events and personalities; he is 
very critical of Aguinaldo. 

Ricarte , Artemio. Memoirs of General Artemio Riaarte . 
Manila: National Heroes Commission, 1963. 

A valuable source of revolutionary information 
by a key participant. Included are transcripts of 
Ricarte 's interrogation and police records. 


Agoncillo, Teodoro A. Malolos : The Crisis of the 

Republic. Quezon City: University of the Philip- 
pines, 1950. 

A professor of history and authority on the 
period recounts in impressive detail the struggle 
of the "have nots" against the "haves," from the 
viewpoint of the common man. 

. The Revolt of the Masses: The Story of 

Bonifacio and the Katipunan. Quezon City: Uni- 
versity of the Philippines, 1956. 

Provides excellent background to the revolution 
of 1896; a fine supplement to the author's Malolos. 

, and Alfonso, Oscar M. History of the 

Filipino People. Quezon City: Malaya Books, 1967. 

Emphasizes the period after 1900,' with numerous 
excerpts from the writing of personalities men- 
tioned . 

Alip, Eufronio M. Philippine- Japanese Relations . 

Manila: Alip and Sons, Inc., 1959. ' 

The president of the Philippine National 
Historical Society has written a short but reveal- 
ing book, showing Japanese sympathy for the 
Filipino revolutionary cause, 

Blount, James H. The American Occupation of the 

Philippines, 1898-1912. New York: G. P. Putnam's 
Sons, 1913. 

A former judge in the Philippine Islands and 
a staunch anti-imperialist takes the Filipino side 
in the independence controversy in a well docu- 
mented work which contrasts with the views of Dean 

Bowring, Sir John. A Visit to the Philippine Islands. 
London: Smith and Elder, 1859. 

A narrative essay by a former governor of 
Kong Kong, expressing little confidence in the 
Filipinos' poiiential for poli-t.ical development. 

Corpuz, Onofre D. The Bureaucracy in the Philippines . 
Ann Arbor, Michigan: University Microfilms, 197 0. 

An astute political scientist stresses the con- 
tinuity of bureaucratic behavior and values from 
the Spanish period. 

The Philippines. Englexvood Cliffs, N.J.: 

Prentice-Hall, 1955 

A useful textbook. 

Costa, Horacio de la, comp. Headings in Philippine 
History. Manila: MDB Printing, 1965. 

Excerpts from selected manuscripts and docu- 
ments, arranged and analyzed by a Jesuit scholar. 

Cushner, Nicholas P. Spain in the Philippines : From 
Conquest to Revolution. Quezon City: Anteneo de 
Manila University, 1971. 

An outstanding book by a Jesuit professor of 
history, examining economic, political, and 
social institutions of the pre-revolutionary 
Philippines, drawing on Seville's Archives of the 


Elliott, Charles Burke. The Philippines to the End of 
the Commission Government; A Study in Tropical 
Democracy . New York: Greenwood Press, 1968, 

An outstanding book dealing with the period 
following the American Military Administration. 
Especially valuable for treatment of the origins of 
the Philippine government. 

The Philippines to the End of the Military 

Regime; America Overseas . Indianapolis: Bobbs- 
Merrill, 1917. 

The former commissioner to the Philippines 
displays an unusual grasp of events leading to the 
American Military Administration. 

Forbes, William C. The Philippine Islands, 2 vols. 
Cambridge, Mass.: Harvard University Press, 1945. 

Former Governor-General Forbes presents a con- 
servative view of the Philippine Islands, quoting 
at length from of ficiaj. .documents . 

Foreman, John. The Philippine Islands. New York: 

Charles Scribner ' s Sons, 1906. (Microform C-188,) 

A many-faceted account derived from actual 
experience, personal acquaintance with leading 
personalities, and professional involvement in the 
administration of the Philippine Islands. 

Gagelonia, Pedro A. Controversial Issues in Philippine 
History. Manila: FEUCCI , 1970. 

Professor Gagelonia critically compares con- 
flicting statements of other historians to expose 
historical problems, but offers no solutions. 

Golay, Frank H. , ed . The United States and the 

Philippines. Englewood Cliffs, N.J.: Prentice- 
Hall, Inc. , 1956. 

The editor has assembled essays on binational 
relationships; the first, by S. P. Lopez — a former 
ambassador — deals with the colonial period. 

Grander, Garel A., and Livezey, William E. The Philip- 
pines and the United States. Norman: University 
of Oklahoma Press, 19 51. 

A competent but outdated study of the origins 
and evolution of United States policy toward the 
Philippines, with special attention to the Inde- 
pendence question. 


Hawes, Harry E. Philippine Uncertainty : An American 
Problem. New York: The Century Co., 1932, 

Sympathetic to the Filipinos, a Republican 
. Senator and anti-imperialist speaks out against 
United States policy in the Philippines. 

LeRoy, James Alfred. The Americans in the Philippines . 
2 vols. New York: AMS Press, 1970. 

A superior work by a former secretary to Taf t , 
focusing on the revolution; displays objectivity 
and diligent research. 

Mahajani, Usha. Philippine Nationalism: External 
Challenge and Filipino Respoyise, 1565-1946. St. 
Lucia: University of Queensland Press, 1971. 

Professor Mahajani 's politico-historical work 
explores the resurgence of Philippine nationalism 
and traces the roots of nationalistic fervor. Con- 
tains historical inaccuracies. 

Malcolm, George Arthur, •■^'dfr-st Malayan Republic : The 
Story of the Philippines . Boston: Christopher 
Publishing House, 1951. 

A sweeping presentation by a former jurist 
residing in the islands. Not well focused; lacks 

Mauro, Garcia, ed. Aguinaldo in Retrospect . Manila: 
Philippine Historical Association, 1969. 

Utilizing manuscripts, family accounts, and 
scholarly works, the editor presents a patriotic 
picture of Aguinaldo. 

Owen, Norman G., ed . Compadre Colonialism: Studies 

on the Philippines Under American Rule. Ann Arbor: 
University of Michigan, 1971. 

Scholarly papers focusing on the relationship 
of the Filipino elite with the Americans. 

Pacis, Vicente, and Pacis, Antonio C. Philippine 
Government and Politics . Quezon City: Alemar- 
Phoenix, 1967. 

A well-written book by a professor of political 
science and a legal analyst, tracing Philippine 
government from its inception to modern times. 
Chapters 1 and 2 discuss Aguinaldo 's government in 
relation to the idea of nationalism. 


Quirino, Carlos. The Young Aguinaldo. Manila: Regal 
Printing Co. , 1969. 

The curator of the Ayala Historical Museum 
. treats Aguinaldo ' s youth, emphasizing personal 
interviews . 

Salamanca, Bonifacio. The Filipino Reaotion to Ameri- 
can Rule: 1901-1913. Hamden, Conn.: The Shoe 
String Press, 1968. 

Dr. Salamanca's monograph, which examines 
Filipino elite response, contains information on 
the social structure of pre-revolutionary Filipino 

Schirmer, Daniel B. Republic ov Empire: American 
Resistance to the Philippine War. Cambridge, 
Mass.: General Learning Press, 1972. 

A modern-day anti-imperialist looks at the 
Philippine-American war, attempts to discredit 
American policy, and draws strong anti-war paral- 
lels from the Vietnam period. 

Segovia, Lazaro. The Full Story of Aguinaldo ' s 

Capture. Translated by Frank De Toma . Manila: 
MCS Enterprises, 1969. 

Segovia was a Spanish soldier turned insurgent 
who surrendered to U.S. forces and became inti- 
mately involved in the seizure of Aguinaldo. 

Sexton, William Thaddeus. Soldiers in the Sun: An 
Adventure in Imperialism. Harrisburg, Penn.: 
The Military Service Publishing Co., 1939. 

A professional army officer looks back to the 
first overseas involvement of the American mili- 
tary. Well written and objective. 

Taylor, George Edward. The Philippines and the United 
States: Problems of Partnership . New York: 
Frederick A. Praeger, 1964. 

Citing examples of American-Filipino inter- 
action, the director of the Far Eastern and Russian 
Institute of the University of Washington attempts 
to relate events to the present. 


Van Meter, Henry Hooker, The Truth About the Philip- 
pines. Chicago: The Liberty League, 1900. 

A staunch anti-imperialist argues against the 
political and economic forces that compelled 
annexation of the Philippines. Uses official 
records . 

Wilcox, Marrion, comp. Harper's History of the War in 
the Philippines. New York: Harper and Bros., 1900. 

Newspaper articles on the Filipino-American 
hostilities, reflecting opinions and prejudices. 

Wildman, Edwin. Aguinaldo . Boston: Lothrop Publishing 
Co. , 1901. 

A former consular official at Hong Kong and 
war correspondent during the revolution, the author 
possesses first-hand knowledge; but, as the brother 
of Rounseville, he is suspect in his account. 

Worcester, Dean Conant . The Phitip.vines Past and 
Present. New York: ..Macmillan. Co. , 1930. 

Worcester, an American official in the Taft 
era, displays his mistrust of the Filipinos and 
predicts dire consequences for the United States. 
An important reference, well-written and docu- 
mented . 


Adorable, Violeta H. "Currents of the Philippine 
Revolution." Verge 3 (December, 1970): 45-70, 

Agoncillo, Teodoro A. "Andres Bonifacio: The People's 
Hero." Fookien Times Yearbook, 1963, pp. 259-61. 

. "The Filipino Intellectuals and the Revolu- 
tion." Philippine Social Sciences and Humanities 
Review 18 (June, 1953): 125-40, 

Blackburn, Robin. "Rebirth of the Revolution." Nation 
211 (7 December 1970): 582-87. 

Corpus, Enrique. "Japan and the Philippine Revolu- 
tion." Philippine Social Science Humanities Review 
6 (n.d.): 249-98, 


Cruz, Romeo. "The Filipino Collaboration With the 
Americans, 1899-1902." Comment (Malila) 10 
(1960): 19-29. 

Epistola, S. V. "The Hong Kong Junta." Philippine 

Social Science Humanities Review 26 (March, 1951): 

Ginsburg, Philip E. "The Chinese in the Philippine 
Revolution." Asia Studies 8 (April, 1970): 

Hong Kong Weekly Press. 2 February 1898-15 October 

Kennon, L. W. V., Colonel, U.S. Army. "The Katipunan 
of the Philippines." North American Review ^ 
August, 1901, pp. 212-20. 

Luckel, Frank. "T-he Philippine .Insurrection. " U.S. 
Naval Institute .-Froeeeding^:-^k--.(Ha-r..c'h, 1938): 

Manila Times. 25 March 1899-25 January 1901. 

Molina, Antonio M. "Genesis of Philippine Separatism." 
Unitas 36 (September, 1963): H33-U5. 

Onorato, Michael Paul. "The United States and the 
Philippine Independence Movement." Solidarity 5 
(September, 1970): 2-15. 

Quirino, Carlos. "Dr. Sun Yat-sen and the Philippine 
Revolution." Fookien Times Yearbook , 1963, 
pp. 2 67-68. 

Resurreccion 5 Celedonio 0. "The Historico-legal 

Aspects of American Vested Rights in the Philip- 
pines." Philippine Historical Review (Manila) 3 
(1970): 293-323. 

Sexton, William T. "Soldiers in the Philippines." 
The Infantry Journal, 1944, pp. 217-19. 

Sionil, Jose F. "The Betrayal of the Masses." 
Solidarity 1 (1966): 1-10. 


"The J ZZ-iis trade -American Collaboration." 

Solidarity 2 (1967): 1-2, 95-96. 

Valderrama, David M. "A Revolution Returns to the 

Philippines." The Quarterly Journal of the Library 
of Congress t January, 1970, pp. 38-50. 

Veyro, Jaime C. de. "The Constitution of Biak-na- 
Bato." Journal of the Philippine Historical 
Society (Manila) 1 (July, 1941): 3-11. 

Villanueva, Honesto A. "A Chapter of Filipino 
Diplomacy." Philippine Social Science and 
Humanities Review 17 (June, 1952): 103-78. 

. "Diplomacy of the Spanish American War." 

Philippine Social Science and Humanities Review 16 
(March, 1951): 31-83. 

'■>" Biblicg'r-aphie'sr 

Bernardo, Gabriel A., comp., and Verzosa, Natividad P., 
ed . Bibliography of Philippine Bibliographies 
1592-1961 . Quezon City: Ateneo University Press, 

An excellent reference source, highly recom- 

Chicago University. Philippine Studies Program. New 
Haven, Conn.: Human Relations Area Files, 1956. 
A selected bibliography of the Philippines. 

Houston, Charles 0., Jr. Philippine Bibliography: An 
Annotated Preliminary Bibliography of Philippine 
Bibliographies . Manila: University of Manila, 

A valuable guide to bibliographies since 1900. 

Lietz, Paul S. Calendar of Philippine Documents in the 
Ayer Collection of the Newberry Library. Chicago: 
Newberry Library, 19 55. 


Saito, Shiro. "The State of Retrospective Research 
Materials in Southeast Asia: The Philippines." 
University of Hawaii Library, Honolulu, 1973. 
(Unpublished MS. ) 

A valuable aid to the location and identifica- 
tion of research materials on the Philippines, 

U.S. Library of Congress. List of Works Relating to 
the American Oaaupation of the Philippine Islands : 
1898-1903. Washington, D.C.: Appleton Prentiss 
Clark Griffin, 1905. 

An outdated reference source but still of some 
value to the researcher. 

. Library of Congress. Orientalia Division. 

Southeast Asia Subject Catalog. Vol. 4: Philip- 
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An outstanding reference source for books 
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Van Niel, Robert. A Survey of Historical Source 

Material. Honolulu: University of Hawaii Press, 



The purpose of this thesis is to trace the 
origin, evolution, and fate of an obscure organization 
that emerged during the Philippine Revolution, a group 
known as the Hong Kong Junta. The Junta's successes 
and failures are analyzed within the context of the 
Filipinos' quest for independence. 

The signing of the pact of Biak-na-Bato in 
December, 1897, signaled the end of the first phase of 
the Philippine Rev,alution., Aguinaldo a.i^ other revolu- 
tionary leaders were exiled by the Spaniards to Hong 
Kong, where they formed their revolutionary committee. 
The study begins with an examination of the social and 
political forces motivating the Junta's formation in 
1898, and follows its struggles to its demise in 1903. 

The primary sources used in this study are 
microfilmed and translated copies of material found in 
the Philippine Insurgent Records , in the custody of the 
National Library of the Philippines. Extensive use was 
also made of United States government documents, partic- 
ularly consular despatches. Senate documents, and 
Congressional records, which provided a wealth of 
translated Spanish and Filipino documents. Memoirs of 


revolutionary personalities, although ancillary, proved 
helpful in determining the mood and direction of the 
revolutionary movement. Whenever possible, opposing 
viewpoints--Filipino, American, Spanish--were compared. 
On the basis of the research, it was determined 
that the Junta linked the two phases of the revolution-- 
Spanish and American. Under the leadership of 
Aguinaldo, the Junta effected an alliance leading to the 
downfall of Spanish colonialism in the Philippines, and 
subsequently involved the Filipino people in a brave 
but hopeless struggle against "the bYiited- States . 
During the insurrection, the Junta achieved notoriety 
for its successful propaganda campaign but, despite 
individual successes, the organization failed to 
achieve its primary goal--Philippine independence. In 
retrospect, however, the Junta did not fail, for it 
transmitted to the Philippines and instilled in the 
populace the desire for independence--a goal that 
remained with the people until it was achieved fifty 
years later. 






"°"^ ^--^'^^:i5S. 



»U«(ry, o 


-27 7 1 



The Filipino Junta in 
Hong Kong, 1898-1903: 
history of a revolution 
ary organization. 

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